Ramsey County Sheriff's Office Public Newsletter - August 2018

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"The Heart of Service"


CO Gomm Salute

Never Forgetting the Fallen

We continue to think about our friends at the Minnesota Department of Corrections and send our condolences for the loss of their Correctional Officer, Joseph Gomm...who was also a friend, family member, co-worker, son, and loved-one. Correctional Officer Gomm was killed while on duty at the Minnesota Correctional Facility-Stillwater on July 18, 2018.

Please take a moment to remember the hard work Correctional Officers do around-the-clock to keep our communities safe.

Making Our Contribution in Drywall

Habitat for Humanity - July 2018

Our second week of home-building in White Bear Lake with Habitat for Humanity - Twin Cities was all about drywall.

Thank you to the phenomenal Habitat staff and volunteers for lessons in "Drywall 101" and the opportunity to collaborate on this important community project.

Every year in Minnesota over 30,000 people contribute their time, effort, and skills to building or repairing over 300 homes as part of Habitat for Humanity projects.

Saying "Fair-well" to a Leader, Mentor, and Friend

On August 10th, several hundred family members, friends, and officers gathered at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds to say "Fair Well" and celebrate the life and contributions of former RCSO Lieutenant and longtime Minnesota State Fair Police Chief Art Blakey.

Here's what they had to say:

"Art was one of those rare golden people that's everything to everyone."

"He'd always say, 'do what's right.'"

"Art was said to have the body of a cop and the heart of a pastor."

"Art was not so interested in making an arrest as in keeping the peace."

"He was a trailblazer."

"Art left his mark in such a positive and ethical way."

"On my first shift, Art told me, 'you be firm, but fair.'"

"Art loved his wife and family."

"Art was a man who lived his life with dignity, morality, and respect."

"What a privilege to have known this man of decency."

We can't say it any better. Fair-well Art - you are already missed.

Art Blakey fair well celebration

Joining the Quarter Century Club

A quarter century.

A fourth of a centennial.

25 years.

No matter how you say it, we are grateful to Commander Mike Norstrem for all he's done in his 25 years of service to Ramsey County. Commander Norstrem currently oversees the RCSO's Criminal Investigations Unit.

Norstrem 25 year service award

Heeding the Fright Farm Call

Fright Farm Volunteer graphic

Looking for an awesome volunteer opportunity that's also fun...and a little spooky?

Then the Fright Farm Haunted House is calling your name.

Join as a volunteer this fall for haunted, spooky Fright Farm fun - go to www.frightfarm.org/volunteer for upcoming informational session dates.

**Note** all volunteers must be at least 18 years old and able to pass a background check.

Fright Farm is a program of the 501c3 non-profit Ramsey County Sheriff's Foundation.

Building Stronger Neighborhoods on Night to Unite

  • 7 contract communities
  • 46 teams
  • 206 block parties
  • Deputies, civilians, retirees, Explorers, Correctional Officers, Reserve Deputies, County Attorney's Office members, City Council members, Chaplains, volunteers, and friends and family members...

We had all the makings of a Night to Unite success story on August 7th!

Although we can't deny that we're big fans of the food, music, and fun at each block party we visit, we're even bigger fans of seeing our community members come out in force each year to get to know each other and to get to know us. It makes for stronger and safer neighborhoods.

Cheers to NTU 2018 - we're already looking forward to next year.

Night to Unite 2018 canva graphic

Remembering Dick "Grumpy" Hagen

Grumpy Dick Hagen passes away in July 2018

We're sending our condolences to the family and many friends of Dick “Grumpy” Hagen, former long-time Divemaster, trainer, and mentor to our Dive Team. Grumpy passed away peacefully at his home in late July surrounded by family.

Grumpy provided many years of outstanding public service as a dive trainer to hundreds of public safety divers at many law enforcement agencies. He was instrumental in guiding our Dive Team through numerous challenging events and call-outs, including the 35W Bridge collapse.

He will be sorely missed.

Volunteering to Help Kids in Crisis

How great are our volunteers?

Each week, RCSO volunteer and Community Affairs Officer Bev Shogren organizes donated stuffed animals and blankets for our deputies to give to kids that they encounter in crisis situations.

You can help too - donations of stuffed animals and beanie babies can be dropped off at our patrol station in Arden Hills at 1411 Paul Kirkwold Drive from 8:30 am - 4:30 pm weekdays.

Check out media coverage of the program by Press Pubs and KSTP.

Bev Shogren and Stuffed Animal donations

Improving Policing...Internationally

A few weeks ago, we joined with members of the Saint Paul Police Department and the Minnesota State Patrol to participate in a special international information exchange with an impressive group of people who traveled quite a distance to be with us.

Law enforcement and government officials from the Mexican states of Quintana Roo, Queretaro, Sonora, Monterrey, and Chihuahua joined us in conversations focused on technology use, crime mapping, and data-driven policing.

Data Driven Policing with Mexican Police

Providing Care on the Go

Care on the Go Fox 9

Spurred by an idea presented during a church sermon, Undersheriff Booker Hodges brought the "Care on the Go" initiative to the RCSO in mid-July.

Care on the Go will provide the nearly 1,500 people who are homeless and released from our jail each year with a Care on the Go pack containing basic necessities and a pamphlet of resources.

Undersheriff Hodges said, "It's something we can give people who have nothing, even if just for a day. Even if you've been arrested, even if you are in jail, you are deserving of care. As an agency and as people, we expect ourselves to always be compassionate."

See details of items needed and donation collection sites.

See coverage of the Care on the Go initiative by Fox9.

Fundraising for the Care on the Go Initiative

Care on the Go ECC Fundraiser

Sheriff Jack Serier, Undersheriff Booker Hodges, and Inspectors Tina Kill and Merci Dahedl were on hand recently to pick up a special donation from our friends and partners at the Ramsey County Emergency Communications Center (ECC), who came together to organize a fundraiser with proceeds going toward our new Care on the Go initiative. Over the course of two weekends, generous ECC members raised $420 for Care on the Go, which was presented by ECC Supervisor Gina Jacobsen.

Thank you partners - we appreciate your generosity.

Reaching Out for Help on an Unsolved Case

Nathan Edberg missing poster

It's been almost 20 years, but we won't give up looking for Nathan (Nate) Edberg, who was last seen on April 14, 1999 in White Bear Lake, Minnesota.

Can you help us?

Do you know something?

Please contact us at 651-266-7320 or call 911 with any information.

See the RCSO unsolved cases.

Making Important Connections

RCSO Inspector Tina Kill first met Lily, Royce, and Milo in 2014 while working as a Saint Paul Police Officer during a Safe Summer Night event in St. Paul, and a group photo tradition was born.

The following summer, the kids sought out and found “Officer Tina” at the Margaret Rec Center in St. Paul, and the summer of 2016 featured yet another summer meet-up and group photo.

Fast forward to July 11, 2018, Inspector Kill (who had transitioned from blue uniforms to brown in 2017) is walking with several RCSO members in the White Bear Avenue Parade, when from the curbside, she hears a child’s voice calling, “Officer Tina! Officer Tina!”

Lily, Royce, and Milo’s grandma said her grand kids were so excited to see “Officer Tina” again during the parade and had been looking for her at other events since they last met in 2016.

No matter where we go, where we work, or how much time elapses, the connections we make with our community members are important to us, too. Cheers to more community events where we can meet and connect.

Kill and kids through the years canva graphic

Sharing Our History - Est. 1849

Brad Camitsch and historic uniform

This photo of retired Commander Brad Camitsch putting the finishing touches on an historical display of a Class A 1965 Sheriff's Deputy uniform earned a First Place blue ribbon in this year's Ramsey County Fair.

The uniform depicted is part of an historic assembly that's currently on exhibit in the Ramsey County Law Enforcement Center in downtown St. Paul.

Thanks to donations and funding from the Ramsey County Sheriff's Foundation, we plan to expand the exhibit in years to come.

Recognizing Solid and Thoughtful Actions

Deputy Sam Loe Class C Commendation

Outstanding work by Deputy Loe, who recently received a Class C Commendation for her actions in peacefully resolving a potentially deadly incident in Falcon Heights last February involving a juvenile with a replica rifle. Undersheriff Rich Clark was on-hand to present Deputy Loe with her commendation.

Deputy Loe was also awarded the 2018 Save our Sons Award in May 2018 for the same incident.

Getting "Caught" has Never Been so Fun

Kids are "getting caught" all around the metro! This time it was Logan and Cody in Little Canada!

Our Deputies are on the lookout this summer for kids who are wearing helmets while bike-riding, in-line skating, skateboarding, or riding scooters! And if we "catch" you, we may write you a coupon for a FREE DQ small ice cream cone.

We're asking kids (and adults) to be safe this summer and always wear helmets during these activities.

Thanks to Dairy Queen and AAA for providing 50,000 free DQ coupons throughout Minnesota.

I Got Caught July 2018

Ensuring You are Served 24/7

Don't Post Do Call

We always enjoy “meeting” you out on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and sharing news and information. There is one thing, though, that we ask you to NOT share with us on our social media platforms – reports of crimes and suspicious activity.

Each week, we receive social media messages and posts from our community members who want to report crimes. Often the posters say they’ve chosen to post instead of call because:

“I don’t want to bother you.”

“I’m not sure of the protocol for calling you.”

“It’s not an emergency.”

Remember that we are here to serve you, help you stay safe, provide you with resources, and respond when you need us. You are not bothering us by requesting our help. Our trained police and fire dispatchers are available to take your calls 24/7 and provide timely and appropriate response.

The takeaway from all of this?

For emergencies, issues that need immediate police response, or to report crimes or suspicious activity, don’t post, DO call.

  • DO call 9-1-1 for emergencies and issues that require immediate police response
  • DO call 651-767-0640 for non-emergencies in Ramsey County

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