Recently Chief Investigator Josh Summerford and I had the opportunity to attend the 2018 National Sheriffs’ Association’s (NSA) Winter Legislative and Technology Conference in Washington D.C. I am honored to serve on the NSA’s Education Committee. The Education Committee works to set agendas for training the nation’s sheriffs.
During the weekend we met with many Alabama and Georgia sheriffs, as well as sheriffs from across the U.S. and their staff, to discuss many issues including mental health, school security, immigration, community policing, training programs and technology. There were a number of training programs on many topics effecting law enforcement today.
We met with members of Congress to discuss the current partnerships with federal law enforcement and housing of federal inmates. Josh had the honor to meet Vice-President Mike Pence, who assured him that both he and President Trump have the backs of law enforcement.
Alabama’s own U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions visited and spoke to the Association. Sessions promised sheriffs that the U.S. Department of Justice was on the side of local law enforcement and wanted to be a force multiplier for us. He told attendees he would do everything possible to support sheriffs and local law enforcement. Those assurances from the Attorney General and the Vice-President are very encouraging.
We have seen a dramatic increase in cooperation with the U.S. Attorney’s Office and federal prosecutions since President Trump appointed Sessions to the role of Attorney General. Cherokee County is blessed to have strong relationships with our federal law enforcement partners, the FBI, ATF, Marshals Service, and others. Through these partnerships and Attorney General Sessions, our Investigators have been able to charge and prosecute several dangerous criminals on the federal level with drugs and firearms. This is very important because those criminals receive a much greater prison sentence in the federal system than they do in the state system.
It was a very productive and educational weekend and I was reminded of how historic the office of sheriff is in America. Attorney General Sessions remarked that since our founding, “The independently elected sheriff has been the people’s protector that keeps law enforcement close and accountable to the people.” I am honored to serve as your sheriff and proud to be part of the Sheriffs’ Association where, “No sheriff stands alone.”