The Adams County Sheriff’s Office in Hettinger, ND is a small department with five – full time officers, and they’re asking for the communities help in filling a big void.
The issue the department is having right now is finding part – time employees to work in the county jail as correctional officers.
“It just adds a lot of extra stress to our current staff,” said Sheriff Travis Collins of the Adams County Sheriffs Office,
Collins also said trying to find people interested in the position is tough.
“Just a difficulty position to fill . . . being on call . . . no guaranteed hours . . .stuff like that”.
If they can’t fill the openings sometime soon, sheriff deputies will have to transport prisoners to Mercer County, which is about 150 miles away.
“A five hour round trip to drop somebody off. It takes man power off the street, and we don’t want to have that happen,” said Collins.
The sheriffs department already has enough on its plate being the sole law enforcement agency for Adams County.
To fill the void, officers having been splitting their shifts and working overtime in the jail cells.
Collins fears that officers working 12 to 16 hours shifts will have negative repercussions.
“People not wanting to come in if we have to overwork them . . . different things like that . . . or wanting to go other places where they don’t have to work so much”.
Collins said the cost of transporting prisoners and officers working overtime is costly, and it takes a big bite out of the departments budget.
“We want to be good stewards of our tax payers money, and use it for the best priority”.
They hope to have reinforcements on the way soon.
Sheriff Collins said he would like to hire an additional three correctional officers as soon as possible.
They currently have two correctional officers on staff,