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Office of the Eaton County Sheriff 

 

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Sheriff Tom Reich

1025 Independence Blvd
Charlotte, Michigan 48813

517-543-3512 or 517-372-8217

 

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Weekly update 2017

OCTOBER 2017

 

 


Weekly Update

October 16, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

33 Alarms 21 Car/deer   accidents
18 Assist Citizen 12 Check well beings
26 Domestic disputes 38 Shoplifting complaints
14 Larcenies 10 Motorist Assists
21 Operating while   impaired 14 Personal injury   crashes
40 Property damage   crashes 25 Suspicious   situations
32 Traffic hazards 312 Traffic stops
35 Traffic   violations 10 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 998 calls for service/events. Law enforcement officers see things that most of us can’t even begin to imagine. Here are a couple of our more interesting calls this week:

  • Suspicious Vehicle in Delta Township at 3:10 a.m. – Homeowner called regarding an unknown car in his driveway. Eaton County Deputies arrived to find 3 subjects in a car, 2 of them were passed out and the third began growling at the Deputy. The driver was lodged for Operating While Intoxicated 1st, and 2 were transported by EMS for high intoxication.
  • Breaking & Entering on E. Saginaw Hwy.  The homeowner was holding the suspect at gun point in the front yard.  Eaton County Deputies arrived and secured the suspect.  The suspect was intoxicated and crashed his car just down the road.  It sounded like he had no idea where he was and was looking to get out of the cold.  The suspect never got more than a step in the house, but he did go through their cars and steal some change.  The suspect was lodged on the Operating While Intoxicated, Larceny from Auto, and Unlawful Entry. 
  • Personal Injury Accident on Kinsel Hwy.  A homeowner called in to report there was a female covered in blood on her door step.  The driver said she swerved off the road and hit some trees.  She was transported to Sparrow.  The driver asked the Deputies to get some things out of her truck, and when they were doing that, the Deputies found some ICE.  The driver was charged with Operating Under the Influence of Drugs.

National Crime Prevention Month. Sadly, there are many areas of crime prevention we all need to be mindful of. This week I felt it important to focus on protecting yourself from violent crime.

  • Don’t walk or jog early in the morning or late at night when the streets are deserted.
  • When out at night, try to have a friend walk with you.
  • Carry only the money you’ll need on a particular day.
  • Don’t display your cash or any other inviting targets such as pagers, cell phones, hand-held electronic games, or expensive jewelry and clothing.
  • If you think someone is following you, switch directions or cross the street. If the person continues to follow you, move quickly toward an open store or restaurant or a lighted house. Don’t be afraid to yell for help.
  • Try to park in well-lighted areas with good visibility and close to walkways, stores, and people.
  • Make sure you have your key out as you approach your door.
  • Always lock your car, even if it’s in your own driveway; never leave your motor running.
  • Do everything you can to keep a stranger from getting into your car or to keep a stranger from forcing you into his or her car.
  • If a dating partner has abused you, do not meet him or her alone. Do not let him or her in your home or car when you are alone.
  • If you are a battered spouse, call 9-1-1 immediately. Assault is a crime, whether committed by a stranger or your spouse or any other family member. If you believe that you and your children are in danger, call a crisis hotline or a health center (the police can also make a referral) and leave immediately.
  • If someone tries to rob you, give up your property—don’t give up your life.
  • If you are robbed or assaulted, report the crime to the police. Try to describe the attacker accurately. Your actions can help prevent someone else from becoming a victim.

Yours in Public Safety,

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

October 9, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

40 Alarms 26 Car/deer   accidents
15 Assist Citizen 24 Check well beings
19 Domestic disputes 32 Shoplifting complaints
20 Larcenies 10 Motorist Assists
18 Operating while   impaired 8 Personal injury   crashes
28 Property damage   crashes 22 Suspicious   situations
21 Traffic hazards 236 Traffic stops
28 Traffic   violations 5 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 891 calls for service/events.

On October 4, 2017 at approximately 4:36 p.m. Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies were dispatched to an address on Conestoga drive in Delta Twp. to locate a runaway juvenile for the Lansing Police Department.  The runaway was believed to be at this residence with her boyfriend. Deputies determined that the boyfriend, an 18-year-old male, was wanted for absconding while on parole.  The suspect was on parole following a conviction for unarmed robbery in Eaton County which occurred in September of 2016.  When Deputies entered the residence, the suspect fled through the neighborhood on foot.  During the chase, the suspect broke into two different residences occupied by the home owners.  The home owners assisted the pursuing Deputies with his direction of travel as he exited their homes and continued his flight.  Deputies relentlessly pursued the suspect and apprehended him near Brookside Drive.

The suspect, Isaiah Murray, was lodged for the parole absconding charge and arraigned on 2 counts of Home Invasion 1st degree (20 year felony), and 1 felony count of Resisting & Obstructing Officers. Bond is $50,000.00 Cash/Surety.

National Crime Prevention Month. With a family’s daily school, work, sporting, and social event schedules, it is not uncommon for children today havetheir owncell phone.   While it’s comforting to know your children can call or text you at any time, it is important to make them aware of the responsibility that comes with having a cell phone. The following are some cell phone rules hopefully you will find helpful in teaching your child the do’s and don’ts of having a cell phone.  

 

  • Never write or forward a photo, or anything in a text, that you wouldn’t want forwarded to everyone in your school, your principal and your parents. Remember that everything you send can become public.
  • Always ask before you forward a text or photo. Be respectful. How would you feel if someone forwarded an unflattering photo of you?
  • Always ask before you take a photo or video. Even once someone has given you permission to take a photo, ask before you post it.
  • If someone asks you to send a sexy photo, remember that even with Snapchat (which "evaporates" the photo), the picture can be copied and forwarded to others. Anyone could see it -- every kid in the school, your teachers, your parents. It happens all the time to great kids. Just don't send it. And talk to your parents about it.
  • If you receive a sexy photo, immediately delete it from your phone, tell your parents or an adult you trust, and block the number so you can't receive more. Possession or distribution of sexual pictures of people who are underage is illegal. If the person who sent it to you asks why, just say "It's illegal. Let's talk instead."
  • Send appropriate texts, email, or picture messages only. Do not give out your address or other personal information on a phone call, text, Facebook, or email to people you don’t know, or if others can hear you.
  • Never respond to numbers, email, texts, pictures, or voicemails you don't recognize.
  • If you receive an unsolicited text, that's spam. Don't click on it. Instead, tell your parents so they can report the problem and have the caller blocked.
  • Don't download apps without your parents' permission. 
  • Don't spend your baby-sitting money all in one place. You don’t need more ringtones. Get unlimited texts so you don’t have to worry about budgeting.
  • Set up your charging station in the living room so your phone is not in your room at night.
  • No cell phones at the dining room table.
  • No cell phones out of your backpack while you're in class.  And of course turn the sound off.
  • Have a life. Don’t feel obligated to respond to texts right away and don’t text until homework is done, during dinner, or after 9 p.m.
  • L8R – Later! If you’re driving, turn off your cell phone and put it in a bag where you can’t reach it in the back seat. (Make sure you have directions before you start out.) Cars kill people.
  • Nothing replaces FtF. If a “friend” sends you a mean message, take a deep breath and turn off your phone. Talk to them the next day, Face to Face, about it. Never say anything via text that you wouldn’t say Face to Face.
  • Monitor your phone usage to prevent addiction. Our brains get a little rush of dopamine every time we interact with our phones, so every text you send or receive, every post or update, feels good. Why is that a problem? Because it can distract us from other things that are important but maybe not so immediately rewarding, like connecting with our families, doing our homework, and just thinking about life. To prevent addiction, make sure you block out time every day -- like while you have dinner and do homework -- when your phone is off. If you feel like that's too hard, talk to your parents about it and ask for their help. There are programs that prevent your phone from being used at times you designate.

Yours in Public Safety,

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

October 2, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

40 Alarms 15 Car/deer   accidents
22 Assist Citizen 22 Check well beings
25 Domestic disputes 31 Shoplifting complaints
24 Larcenies 15 Motorist Assists
25 Operating while   impaired 7 Personal injury   crashes
32 Property damage   crashes 23 Suspicious   situations
20 Traffic hazards 369 Traffic stops
23 Traffic   violations 4 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 1,061 calls for service/events.

Personal Injury Accidents: 1) Head-on collision on Nashville Hwy just east of Mason Rd - One driver went to Sparrow Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.  The other driver was treated at the scene and released.  An eastbound pickup turned left into private drive and failed to yield to a westbound SUV.  2) A Deputy was traveling southbound on Elmwood in Delta Township when a vehicle came by at over 100 mph northbound on Elmwood.  The vehicle proceeded through the red light at Willow and was not able to negotiate the curve on Greenbriar and crashed in to a bi-level home and miraculously no one was hurt, and the driver didn’t suffer any life threatening injuries. 3)M50 and Vermontville - A female was eastbound on Vermontville and never stopped at the stop sign.  Fully loaded semi was southbound and had no chance to avoid her.  Female suffered non-life threatening injuries and was transported to sparrow.  The road was closed down for a little over an hour.   

National Crime Prevention Month. Last week focused on keeping your children safe in your neighborhood and Neighborhood Watch groups. To continue our series I want to give you information on internet safety.

Almost all children today have access to the Internet through schools, libraries, community centers, or their home. Not only do more children have access to the Internet than ever before, but they are using it more, too. Many schools incorporate the Internet into their curricula and encourage online research for projects. But that’s not all kids are doing online. They also email, chat with friends through instant messenger and in chat rooms, play games, create websites and web blogs, and just surf the ‘net. Even as kids grow savvier in their use of the Internet, it can still be a dangerous place. The good news is that most dangers can be avoided if children and their parents learn about smart Internet use.

Tips for Parents -

  • To guard against identity theft, never give out your Social Security number. Treat it as confidential information.
  • Commit all passwords to memory. Never write them down or carry them with you.
  • When using an ATM machine, make sure no one is hovering over you and can see you enter your password.
  • When participating in an online auction, try to pay the seller directly with a credit card so you can dispute the charges if the merchandise does not arrive or was misrepresented. If possible, avoid paying by check or money order.
  • Adopt an attitude of healthy skepticism toward websites that offer prizes or giveaways. Chances are, all that’s been “won” is the opportunity to buy something you didn’t want in the first place.
  • Choose a commercial online service that offers parental control features.
  • Tell your children never to give out their address telephone number password school name or any other personal information.
  • Make sure your children know to never agree to meet face-to-face with someone they’ve met online without discussing it with you. Only if you decide that it’s okay to meet their “cyber-friend” should they arrange to meet this person, and then the meeting should be in a familiar public place in the presence of a trusted adult.
  • Tell your children never to respond to messages that have bad words, are scary, or just seem weird.
  • Tell your children never to enter an area that charges for services without asking you first.
  • Tell children never send a picture of themselves to anyone without your permission.
  • Make sure that access to the Internet at your children’s school is monitored by adults.

Parents' Guide to Social Networking Websites

You’ve probably heard the names – MySpace.com, Facebook.com, Xanga.com. These are some of the top social networking websites that have become an online craze for teens and for many adults. You’ve probably also heard some stories about how pedophiles are surfing these pages for their next targets, or how teens are having their identities stolen after posting too much information online. The good news is that young people can protect themselves and their personal information easily, if they know how. As a parent, you can teach your children how to safely use social networking websites and make sure that they do. Below are some ways that you can protect your children and their personal information online.

Talk to your kids about the risks -

  • Explain that online information and images can live forever. It can be very hard and sometimes impossible to take down information that is posted, and photos and information may already have been copied and posted elsewhere.
  • Tell your children not to post any identifying information online. This includes their cell phone number, address, hometown, school name, and anything else that a stranger could use to locate them.
  • Explain that anyone in the world can access what they post online. Tell your children that some college admissions boards and employers are checking social networking sites before they admit students or hire people.
  • Remind your children never to give out their passwords to anyone but you – not even their friends. Explain that if someone has their password, they could post embarrassing and unsafe information about them on their personal pages and even pose as your children to talk to other people.
  • Make sure that children understand that some people they meet online may not be who they say they are. Explain that on the Internet many people are not truthful about their identity and may even pretend to be someone else. It’s important to stress that young people should never meet people face-to-face that they met online.

Protect them from dangers -

  • Most social networking websites require that young people be at least 13-years old, and sometimes even 18, to create an account. Don’t let younger children pretend to be older to use these websites.
  • MySpace and some other social networking websites let users set their profiles to private so that only their friends – usually defined as people that know their full name or email address – can contact them. Make sure younger teens’ profiles are set to private.
  • Go online with your children and have them show you all of their personal profiles. Ask to see some of their friends’ profiles too. If they have a blog or share photos online, ask to see them too.
  • Treat your children’s online activities like you do their offline ones. Ask questions about what they do, who their friends are, and if they have made any new friends.
  • Set clear rules that you can all agree on regarding what your children are allowed to do online. Make sure you decide if your children are allowed to post photos of themselves and open accounts without your permission.

Yours in Public Safety,

Sheriff Tom Reich

 


 

SEPTEMBER 2017

 

Weekly Update

September 25, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

30 Alarms 10 Car/deer   accidents
25 Assist Citizen 23 Check well beings
15 Domestic disputes 51 Shoplifting   complaints
19 Larcenies 12 Motorist Assists
21 Operating while   impaired 9 Personal injury   crashes
32 Property damage   crashes 23 Suspicious   situations
27 Traffic hazards 297 Traffic stops
39 Traffic   violations 8 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 1,021 calls for service/events.

October is National Crime Prevention Month. For the next few weeks I want to focus on giving you things you can do to keep your family safe in your neighborhood, on the internet, on their cell phones, and keeping your little goblins safe on Halloween.

 Neighborhood Safety Tips For Parents –

 Unfortunately no neighborhood is completely immune to crime. However, there are steps you can take to help keep your family and your neighborhood safe.

  • Know where your children are. Have your children tell you or ask permission before leaving the house and give them a time to check in or be home. When possible, have them leave a phone number of where they will be.
  • Help children learn important phone numbers. Have your children practice reciting their home phone number and address, and your work and cell phone numbers. If they have trouble memorizing these, write them down on a card and have them carry it at all times. Tell your children where you will be and the best way to reach you.
  • Set limits on where your children can go in your neighborhood. Do you want them crossing busy roads? Playing in alleys or abandoned buildings? Are there certain homes in your neighborhood that you don't want your children to go to?
  • Get to know your children's friends. Meet their parents before letting your children to go to their home and keep a list of their phone numbers. If you can't meet their parents, call and talk to them. Ask what your children might do at their house and if they will be supervised.
  • Choose a safe house in your neighborhood. Pick a neighbor's house where your children can go if they need help. Point out other places they can go for help, like stores, libraries, and police stations.
  • Teach children to settle arguments with words, not fists. Role-play talking out problems, walking away from fist fights, and what to do when confronted with bullies. Remind them that taunting and teasing can hurt friends and make enemies.
  • Work together with your neighbors. Watch out for suspicious and unusual behavior in your neighborhood. Get to know your neighbors and their children so you can look out for one another.

Neighborhood Watch -

Neighborhood Watch is one of the oldest and most effective crime prevention programs in the country, bringing citizens together with law enforcement to deter crime and make communities safer.
 
Sponsored by the
National Sheriffs’ Association (NSA), Neighborhood Watch can trace its roots back to the days of colonial settlements, when night watchmen patrolled the streets. The modern version of Neighborhood Watch was developed in response to requests from Sheriffs and Police Chiefs who were looking for a crime prevention program that would involve citizens and address an increasing number of burglaries.
 
Launched in 1972, Neighborhood Watch counts on citizens to organize themselves and work with law enforcement to keep a trained eye and ear on their communities, while demonstrating their presence at all times of day and night. The program took off quickly: in just ten years, NSA data showed that 12 percent of the population was involved in a Neighborhood Watch. Neighborhood Watch works because it reduces opportunities for crime to occur; it doesn’t rely on altering or changing the criminal’s behavior or motivation.

For more information on starting your own Neighborhood Watch in your area, the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office contact is Deputy VanCore. His phone number is 517-323-8482.

Yours in Public Safety,

Sheriff Tom Reich

 


 

Weekly Update

September 18, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

32 Alarms 11 Assaults
30 Assist Citizen 21 Check well beings
20 Domestic disputes 67 Shoplifting complaints
14 Larcenies 6 Motorist Assists
29 Operating while   impaired 8 Personal injury   crashes
23 Property damage   crashes 22 Suspicious   situations
32 Traffic hazards 340 Traffic stops
32 Traffic   violations 8 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 1,039 calls for service/events.

With summer behind us, many households are back in their normal routines of getting the kids off to school, us off to work, staggered schedules with sporting events, etc. I felt it important to remind you of ways you can protect your home and your valuables during these extended times when there may not be anyone home. Home burglaries typically aren’t elaborate, well planned heists. Most of the time, burglars are simply looking for an easy mark: unlocked doors, empty houses, and valuables left in plain sight ripe for the picking.

#1: Lock Your Doors and Windows: It should go without saying, but it’s important to always lock your front and back doors, even when you’re home. Your windows should be closed when you’re not home, and you should lock them as soon as they are closed. Also consider the security of your garage door, which can also allow access into your home. Don’t just hand over your key, either. Avoid leaving a spare key out where a burglar can simply pick up a rock and discover it. Instead, give a spare key to a trusted neighbor who you can visit to gain access.

#2: Show Signs of Life: Burglars prefer to hit homes where no one is home — and even better if no one has been at home for a while. That means they can take their time getting in, taking what they want, and getting out. Take a look at your front yard. If you’ve got overgrown grass, a full mailbox, and a few papers to pick up, you’re sending a message to burglars that no one is home. If you’re going to be away from home, ask for help from neighbors or hire a service to cut your grass or shovel snow so that it appears you’re still home, and ask a neighbor or friend to stop by and collect mail and packages. It’s also a good idea to use a timing device around the clock and especially when you won’t be home.

#3: Always Answer Your Door: When your door bell rings, you never know who is on the other side of the door. A burglar could be dressed as a solicitor or repair person while attempting to gain access to your home. And while you certainly don’t want to open the door and allow them to come in, it’s not smart to simply ignore them. Why? Often, burglars will ring the door bell first to see if someone is home. And if you don’t answer, you’re telling them the house is empty — and free to explore.

Use your peephole to see who is there, and if you’re not expecting them or don’t recognize them, simply tell them you’re not interested. They may continue to engage with you to encourage you to open the door, but at this point, you’ve done your part: you let them know you are home and that your house is no longer an easy target.

#4: Hide Your Valuables: If you have a nice camera, large TV, multiple mobile devices, jewelry, or other valuables within sight, burglars may see your home as an attractive target. Move items away from the view of windows that you may open, or simply keep shades or blinds in easy to see places closed. Consider frosting your garage door windows if you have them. Also, don’t leave valuable items like bicycles in your front yard. If you make a big purchase like a TV, avoid putting the empty box out as is with your recycling. Break it down, turn it inside out, and try to fit it in the bin with the rest of your recyclables.  

#5: Make Entry Points Unattractive: Burglars love a hidden door or window. That means if you have lots of shrubbery or trees near your windows, or if your front door is blocked from view, you’re more likely to be burglarized than your neighbors without these issues. You can’t move your front door, but you can install lighting. Make sure that your doors, both front and back, are well lit. Ideally, you should install motion sensing lights that call attention to the presence of movement. Around windows and fences, trim back any shrubbery that might make it easy for a burglar to hide or gain access. Motion sensing lights are useful in these areas as well. Also, consider thorny shrubs around windows that will make it not just unattractive, but painful for burglars to gain entry into your home.

#6: Store Valuables Away from Your Master Bedroom: Usually, the master bedroom is the first place a burglar will look for valuables. They’ll see if you have cash or valuables like jewelry in your nightstand, and rifle through the rest of your belongings for electronics, guns, drugs, and more. Burglars are less likely to look in your attic, basement, hall closets, or kitchen. Even childrens’ bedrooms are often bypassed, particularly young children who probably don’t have electronics in their rooms. Don’t think you’re being clever by hiding valuables in the freezer, however. Burglars have known that trick for years. Your best bet is to get a home safe that is bolted securely to your home. Make it easy for you to access, like in your basement or even in a hall closet, but make sure it isn’t easy to remove.
 
#7: Never Give Clues You Won’t Be Home: Serious burglars watch your patterns, read your social media, and keep an eye out for cars, work schedules, and other details to find their best opportunity to find an open, empty house. If you have a garage, use it. Parking in your garage makes it difficult for a burglar to know when you’re home and when you’re not. If there’s never a car in the driveway, the absence of one doesn’t tell them that you’re not home — it just tells them things are normal.

If you leave for work and return at the exact same time every day, burglars know just how long they have to get in and out before you make it home. Consider breaking routines on a regular basis to show any burglars who might be watching that you could come home and discover them at any time.

Don’t send out a message online that you won’t be home as well. It’s fun to discuss your travel plans, but keep in mind that by doing so, you could be broadcasting to burglars that your home will be empty and easy to access. 
 
#8: Get a Best Friend: If you can’t be home yourself, a dog is the next best thing. Large breeds are the most intimidating to burglars, as they can be more dangerous if they attack, but regardless of size, any dog that barks is a problem for burglars. Already have a dog at home? Consider getting a Beware of Dog sign to let burglars know that they won’t be opening up an empty house.

These are eight of the easiest ways to make your home unattractive to burglars. They’re either free or low cost, and often, just require simple, easy tweaks that don’t take a lot of effort.

Yours in Public Safety,

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

September 11, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

26 Alarms 17 Car/deer   accidents
23 Assist Citizen 23 Check well beings
22 Domestic disputes 15 Shoplifting   complaints
20 Larcenies 9 Motorist Assists
16 Operating while   impaired 7 Personal injury   crashes
20 Property damage   crashes 27 Suspicious   situations
19 Traffic hazards 276 Traffic stops
19 Traffic   violations 3 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 912 calls for service/events.

With school back in session, many of our children will be home from school before we get home from work. I want to share with you home safety tips for kids and parents that I found at Homesecurityresource.org.  

Home safety alert for kids: Follow these tips to stay safe and secure at home, whether you’re home alone or home with your family.

  • Always lock the door behind you. Keep your key safely in your pocket when you’re not at home.
  • Learn how to use your home security system.
  • Never enter your home if the door or windows are broken.
  • If you notice a stranger breaking in, find a safe place to hide and call 911 immediately.
  • Ask your parents to set up a code word for safety.
  • Never open the door for strangers or tell a caller that you’re home alone.
  • Create an emergency safety kit with a flashlight, first aid supplies, and a battery powered radio.
  • Practice calling 911, including sharing your name, address, and phone number.
  • Call 911 if there is a burglar, someone is hurt, or there is a fire.
  • Memorize and practice dialing important phone numbers, like your mom and dad’s cell phone numbers.
  • Create a safe evacuation plan for a fire or other emergency with your parents.
  • Never post on social media that you’re home alone or going out of town. Do not share your address on social media.

For Parents: With this home security guide for kids, you can go over the basics of home security with your children. Follow these tips to make the most of the guide and keep your children safe.

  • Make a plan: Tell children what they should do in an emergency, such as hide from burglars, evacuate during a fire, and call 911 if there’s an emergency. Children should know the safest way to escape from their home.
  • Practice and write down important phone numbers: Work with your child to help them memorize your cell phone number and 911. For other numbers, write them down in a place that’s easy to find and make sure they know where it is.
  • Show them how to use your home security system: Make sure children      know how to arm and disarm your home security system properly so that they can use it, particularly if they are home alone. At the very least, show children how to use a panic button or call for help.
  • Make arrangements with a trusted neighbor: If your child will be home alone for any period, talk to a neighbor you trust about being a resource for them in case of emergency. Tell your children that if there’s a serious problem, they can go to your neighbor’s house for help.
  • Create a code word: Talk with your child to create a code word that others can use to indicate that they’re safe to talk to. This is useful for friends, family, and neighbors that might need to visit your home or drive your child somewhere.
  • Put together a safety kit: Ask your child to help you gather items for a home security and safety kit, including a first aid kit, radio, flashlight, and important emergency numbers.
  • Establish rules for checking in: Another important tip for children at home is making sure they know how and when to check in with you. Create and agree to guidelines together about when they’ll call you, such as when they get home, if someone knocks on the door, and when friends want to come over.
  • Set guidelines for social media:  For older children, make sure they’re clear on what is and isn’t OK to post on social media, such as your home address and travel plans.

Yours in Public Safety,

Sheriff Tom Reich

 


 

Weekly Update

September 4, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

29 Alarms 6 Car/deer   accidents
20 Assist Citizen 13 Check well beings
18 Domestic disputes 23 Shoplifting complaints
15 Larcenies 14 Motorist Assists
20 Operating while   impaired 11 Personal injury   crashes
26 Property damage   crashes 27 Suspicious   situations
23 Traffic hazards 341 Traffic stops
38 Traffic   violations 6 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 1,003 calls for service/events.

International Drug Overdose Day – Sadly drug overdoses are so much on the rise worldwide that August 31st was declared International Drug Overdose Day to raise awareness of this epidemic that has taken the lives of thousands of loved ones.   The following is important information that will hopefully raise your awareness and save a life:

What is an overdose? An overdose means having too much of a drug (or combination of drugs) for your body to be able to cope with. All drugs can cause an overdose, including prescription medication prescribed by a doctor. It is important to know your correct dosage, what drugs definitely should not be mixed, and know to seek help if you feel you are not in control of your drug use.

Depressant overdose: Opioids, benzodiazepines & barbiturates (medical Depressants), and alcohol all slow the central nervous system to produce a calming effect. These substances are often prescribed to relieve pain, help you sleep, or in the case of alcohol, used recreationally when socializing. Opioids are narcotics and include oxycodone and hydromorphone. Fentanyl, methadone, morphine and heroin are all opiates.

Benzodiazepines are used medically to reduce anxiety, help people sleep and to relax the body. They include diazepam or Valium, oxazepam or Serepax , alprazolam or Xanax and a number of other drugs. Taken in high doses or in conjunction with alcohol they are responsible for many overdoses.

Signs of depressant drug overdose (e.g. heroin, morphine, oxycodone, fentanyl, and methadone) include:

  • shallow breathing or not breathing at all
  • snoring or gurgling sounds (this can mean that a person’s airway is partly blocked)
  • blue lips or fingertips
  • floppy arms and legs
  • no response to stimulus
  • disorientation
  • unrousable (can’t be woken up) unconsciousness.

If you can’t get a response from someone, don’t assume they are asleep. Not all overdoses happen quickly and sometimes it can take hours for someone to die. Action taken in those hours could save a life. This is a medical emergency: call the ambulance immediately if you can’t rouse them.

Alcohol poisoning/overdose: Generally people do not automatically think of alcohol when they think of overdose, but alcohol is a depressant and it is all too possible to overdose on it. Acute alcohol poisoning, which is usually a result of binge drinking, is an example. Our bodies can process about one unit of alcohol an hour. If you drink a lot quickly the amount of alcohol in your bloodstream (blood alcohol concentration, or BAC) may become dangerously high, which can stop your body from working properly.

Signs of alcohol intoxication to the point of overdose include:

  • disorientation
  • loss of coordination
  • vomiting
  • seizures
  • irregular or slow breathing (less than eight breaths a minute)
  • blue-tinged or pale skin
  • low body temperature (hypothermia)
  • stupor (being conscious but unresponsive)
  • unconsciousness (passing out).

Stimulant overdose: It is possible to overdose on amphetamines such as speed and ice. Amphetamine overdose increases the risk of heart attack, stroke, seizure or drug-induced psychotic episodes. Amphetamine overdoses look different from an Opioid overdose; signs and symptoms include:

  • chest pain
  • disorientation/confusion
  • severe headache
  • seizures
  • high temperature (overheating, but not sweating)
  • difficulty breathing
  • agitation and paranoia
  • hallucinations
  • unconsciousness.

The Opioid epidemic has been increasingly in the news nationally and locally. For many of our own families here in Eaton County this epidemic has hit close to home. I hope this information will help you in recognizing a potential problem you may see with a loved one and be able to intervene in saving their life.

Yours in Public Safety,

Sheriff Tom Reich

 

 

AUGUST 2017

Weekly Update

August 28, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

32 Alarms 6 Car/deer   accidents
15 Assist Citizen 13 Check well beings
20 Domestic disputes 22 Shoplifting complaints
23 Larcenies 15 Citizen Assists
17 Operating while   impaired 13 Personal   injury crashes
34 Property damage   crashes 61 Suspicious   situations/Subjects/Vehicles
19 Traffic hazards 285 Traffic stops
29 Traffic   violations 1 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 975 calls for service/events.

As responsible drivers, we all know we share the road with not only other vehicles, but also with those riding motorcycles, scooters, bicycles, etc. Even though we all watch out for each other, accidents do happen. This time of year there are organizations conducting bike-a-thons and families out for an evening bike ride enjoying their time together. Please read the following 10 rules of the road for driving near bicyclists. This was published by Edmonds.com:

1. Appreciate Bicyclist Vulnerability: A car weighs 2 tons or so, while the average bike is a mere 20 pounds. In any collision between car and bike, the bike always loses.

2. Know Bicyclists' Rights: Drivers sometimes have little idea of the traffic laws that apply to bicyclists. Bicycles in the roadway are considered vehicles.  Cyclists 10 years and older should behave as though they were vehicles on the street, riding in the same direction as other traffic that's going their way and following the same traffic rules. Always look carefully for bicyclists before turning left or right, merging into bicycle lanes and opening doors next to moving traffic. Respect the right of way of bicyclists because they are entitled to share the road with you.

3. Adjust That Attitude: Motorists tend to think of cyclists as ''in their way," but they should think of them as equals, just as entitled to the roadway as drivers are. Drivers who get impatient with bicyclists might want to stop for a moment and think about the human being on that bike. What if that rider was my friend, a friend of a friend, or a neighbor? Somehow, seeing bicyclists that way makes people a little more patient.

4. Consider the Benefits of Bicycling — for Drivers: One cyclist on the road is one less car. Cyclists don't wear out the road.

5. Spare Them the Right Hook: Intersections are venues for serious car-cycle collisions. Drivers making right turns, especially, should watch out for cyclists. A cyclist may be a little behind and to the right of you, and may be planning to ride straight ahead. If you don't signal your right turn, you could wind up hitting each other, with the point of contact somewhere on your car's right side. If you are trying to figure out if a nearby cyclist is planning to turn right, look for his raised left hand in a squared position , or an extended right hand.

6. Beware the Left Turn: A driver trying to make a left turn sees an oncoming bicyclist, but the driver figures he has plenty of time to complete the turn. Sometimes, that's not true. After a collision, a driver often says he didn't realize the cyclist was going that fast. Exercise the same caution as you would for an approaching vehicle.

7. Give Cyclists 3 Feet of Clearance: More than 20 states have passed laws requiring motorists to give bicycles on the roadway about 3 feet of space. Bike riders really appreciate that, and the 3-foot rule helps drivers by giving them a concrete frame of reference. It's also best for drivers to pass bicycles slowly and smoothly. The motorist's tendency is to speed up and get by the cyclists as quickly as possible. It's pretty unnerving when you are on a bike and a car accelerates. You can also spare cyclists' nerves by honking sparingly.

8. Look Around — but Not at Your Phone: Drivers who have hit cyclists almost always say the same frightening, sobering thing: "I never saw him before I hit him." If drivers only expect other cars on the road, they're setting themselves up for dangerous interactions. Start looking out for everybody, including other vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians.

9. Look Before You Exit Your Car: Cyclists are terrified of being "doored." Imagine a rider pedaling along next to a row of parked cars. Suddenly, a driver flings her door open. The impact can send the cyclist flying, and riders have died when they've been thrown into traffic. Before you open the door, look out the side view mirror on the driver side and be sure no one is approaching.

10. Accept That Bicyclists Are Here To Stay: Bicycling is on the rise. People are taking it up for exercise or to reduce commuting costs.

Yours in Public Safety,

Sheriff Tom Reich

 

 


 

Weekly Update

August 21, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

26 Alarms 7 Car/deer   accidents
20 Assist Citizen 17 Check well beings
25 Domestic disputes 59 Shoplifting complaints
20 Larcenies 20 Citizen Assists
21 Operating while   impaired 9 Personal injury   crashes
22 Property damage   crashes 34 Suspicious   situations
27 Traffic hazards 215 Traffic stops
35 Traffic   violations 7 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 925 calls for service/events.

SCHOOL BUS SAFETY ALERT:  STOPPING FOR SCHOOL BUS AND OTHER SAFETY TIPS

With schools starting across Michigan, the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office wants you to know the laws for school buses. Passing a school bus that is loading or unloading students is prohibited under any circumstances. The law requires motorists to come to a complete stop at least 20 feet from a school bus whenever a bus is stopped and employing the use of its two red flashing signals. The driver may proceed once the bus resumes motion.

Tips for Motorists:

  • Slow down and prepare to stop whenever you see yellow school bus lights flashing.
  • The law now requires motorists to come to a complete stop at least 20 feet from a school bus whenever a bus is stopped and employing the use of its two red flashing signals. The driver may proceed once the bus resumes motion.
  • Never pass a school bus when children are loading or unloading. That is the Law!
  • Remember that children are unpredictable in their actions. Take extreme caution when traveling in a school zone.
  • If you live in an area where there are no sidewalks, drive cautiously. Be more alert to the possibility of children walking in the road.
  • Be more aware of children playing near school bus stops.
  • Take extra time to look for kids at intersections, on medians and on curbs.
  • Enter and exit driveways and alleys slowly and carefully
  • Reduce any distractions inside your car so you can concentrate on the road and your surroundings.
  • Put down your phone – don’t talk or text while driving!

Tips for Students

  • Always arrive at the bus stop early.
  • Prior to boarding, wait until the bus has some to a complete stop, the door is opened and the bus driver says that it’s OK to board.
  • Once on board proceed quickly to your seat and stay sitting until the bus arrives at your school or other drop off location.
  • Do not move around on the bus.
  • Always walk on the sidewalk when preparing to cross the street near a bus. Make eye contact with the driver so that you are sure he or she sees you.
  • Never walk behind the bus.
  • If you are walking beside the bus, make sure you are at least 10 feet (10 “giant” steps) away.
  • Take extra precaution to make sure that clothing with drawstrings and book bags do not get caught in the hand rail or door.
  • Never stop to pick something up you have dropped while the bus is stopped. Wait until the bus has driven off to avoid not being seen by the driver.

Traveling to and from School

  • Plan a walking route to school or the bus stop. Choose the most direct way with the fewest street crossings and, if possible, with intersections that have crossing guards.
  • Walk the route with your child beforehand. Tell him or her to stay away from parks, vacant lots, fields and other places where there aren’t many people around.
  • Teach your child never to talk to strangers, accept rides from strangers or accept gifts from strangers. Remember, a stranger is anyone you or your children don’t know well or don’t trust.
  • Be sure your child walks to and from school or the bus stop with a sibling, friend or neighbor.
  • Teach your kids – whether walking, biking or riding the bus to school – to obey all traffic signals, signs and traffic officers. Remind them to be extra careful in bad weather.
  • When driving kids, deliver and pick them up as close to the school as possible. Don’t leave until they are in the schoolyard or building.
  • If your child bikes to school make sure he wears a helmet that meets safety standards. Research indicates that a helmet can reduce the risk of head injury by up to 85%.
  • If your child rides a scooter to school, make sure she wears sturdy shoes, a  helmet, kneepads and elbow pads. Children under 12 should not ride motorized scooters.
  • Be sure your child knows his or her home (or parents’ cellular) phone number(s) and address. They should also know where you work, your work phone number, the phone number of another trusted adult and how to call 911 for emergencies.

Yours in Public Safety,

Sheriff Tom Reich

 


 

Weekly Update

August 14, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

35 Alarms 6 Car/deer   accidents
23 Assist Citizen 19 Check well beings
17 Domestic disputes 58 Shoplifting complaints
17 Larcenies 14 Motorist Assists
11 Operating while   impaired 3 Personal injury   crashes
19 Property damage   crashes 17 Suspicious   situations
21 Traffic hazards 245 Traffic stops
38 Traffic   violations 9 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 931 calls for service/events.

With summer in full swing, the Labor Day holiday weekend fast approaching, and gas prices at record lows, more families than ever are taking to the roads. This is a perfect opportunity to remind you of the following Child Passenger Safety Tips provided by the Michigan State Police:

More than 70 percent of car seats are installed incorrectly and more than half of all kids who should use a booster seat do not.  Correctly used car seats can reduce the risk of death and injury in a traffic crash by more than 50 percent.

Here are some quick tips to ensure your children are riding safely:

  • Children      should ride in a rear-facing car seat until they are at least 2 years old.
  • Children      2 years or older should ride in a forward-facing car seat with a harness      until they outgrow the weight or height limits of the car seat.
  • The      car seat harness should be snug to the body and the chest clip at arm-pit      level.
  • Booster      seats are for big kids! Kids need a booster seat until they are at least      4’9” tall or eight-years-old.
  • Always      buckle everyone up - - every ride, every time.

Remember, never purchase or borrow a used car seat that:

  • Has      been involved in a crash
  • Has      been recalled
  • Has      no date of manufacture and/or model number
  • Has      expired (typically after six years)
  • Is      damaged or missing parts

For more information on child passenger safety or to find a car seat check near you, visit http://www.michigan.gov/msp

Another item provided by the Michigan State Police I wanted to make you aware of is Ensuring Complete Family Readiness by Creating a Pet Preparedness Kit. Many families have taken the advice of the MSP Emergency Management and Homeland Security Division (MSP/EMHSD) by adopting and practicing actions to be taken in an emergency situation and making emergency preparedness kits for the family. How many have thought about creating an emergency preparedness kit for their pets to ensure complete family readiness during an emergency or disaster?

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, more than 50 percent of households in the United Sates include pets.  This means it is important to plan ahead for their safety in the event of an emergency or disaster. 

To create a pet preparedness kit, gather the following items and place them in a safe location that is easily accessible:

  • Food      (your pet's regular food)
  • Water
  • Leash      and collar
  • Bowls
  • Photo      of your pet or some other identification and a photo of you with your pet
  • Medication      your pet needs
  • Immunization      and vet records (keep both updated)
  • First      aid kit
  • Contact      list of pet-friendly hotels, veterinarians and out-of-town friends and      family
  • Toys,      rope and sanitation bags
  • Pet      carrier

To learn more about being prepared before, during and after an emergency or disaster, follow the MSP/EMHSD on Twitter at @MichEMHS or go to www.michigan.gov/miready.

 

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich

 


 

Weekly Update

August 7, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

36 Alarms 10 Car/deer   accidents
24 Assist Citizen 18 Check well beings
18 Domestic disputes 50 Shoplifting complaints
29 Larcenies 16 Motorist Assists
18 Operating while   impaired 10 Personal injury   crashes
31 Property damage   crashes 32 Suspicious   situations
29 Traffic hazards 286 Traffic stops
32 Traffic   violations 10 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 1,031 calls for service/events.

It will be back to school time for many of our area school districts within the next few weeks. What better time to remind students and drivers of school bus safety. Whether you are riding a school bus or sharing the roadway with them, please take a few minutes to review the following safety tips with the students and drivers in your home.

School Bus Safety -

School buses are the safest mode of transportation for getting children back and forth to school. Riding in a school bus is safer than walking, riding a bicycle, or being driven to school in private vehicles.

The majority of bus-related deaths and injuries involve pedestrians-mostly children-who are struck by a bus or injured when they are exiting the bus to cross traffic.

School bus safety tips for drivers:

  • Prepare to stop when a slowing bus has its      overhead yellow lights flashing
  • Stop at least 20 feet away for buses when      red lights are flashing, unless driving in the opposite direction on a      divided highway
  • Slow down in or near school and      residential areas
  • Look for clues-such as safety patrols,      crossing guards, bicycles, and playgrounds-that indicate children might be      in the area
  • Watch for children between parked cars and      other objects

School buses are like traffic signals:

  • When overhead lights are flashing yellow:      Prepare to stop
  • When overhead lights are flashing red:      Stop
  • When hazard warning lights are flashing:      Proceed with caution

School bus safety tips for students:

  • Always stay in sight of the bus driver
  • Don't hurry off the bus; check traffic      first
  • Don't go back to the bus after exiting

Crosswalk Safety tips for drivers:

  • Don't block the crosswalk when stopped at a red light or waiting to make a turn, forcing pedestrians to go around you; this could put them in the path of moving traffic
  • In a school zone when flashers are blinking, stop and yield to pedestrians crossing the crosswalk or intersection
  • Always stop for a school patrol officer or crossing guard holding up a stop sign
  • Take extra care to look out for children in school zones, near playgrounds and parks, and in all residential areas
  • Don't honk or rev your engine to scare a pedestrian, even if you have the right of way
  • Never pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians
  • Always use extreme caution to avoid striking pedestrians wherever they may be, no matter who has the right of way

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich

 


 

July 2017

 

Weekly Update

July 31, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

37 Alarms 11 Disorderly   Persons
28 Assist Citizen 28 Check well beings
11 Domestic disputes 31 Shoplifting complaints
26 Larcenies 16 Motorist Assists
25 Operating while   impaired 6 Personal injury   crashes
28 Property damage   crashes 28 Suspicious   situations
26 Traffic hazards 224 Traffic stops
38 Traffic   violations 11 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 990 calls for service/events.

The Secretary of State recently published an important article entitled Sharing the Road with Commercial Vehicles. Whether you are running errands, enjoying a weekend get-a-way with family, or taking that much-deserved vacation, you very likely will encounter commercial vehicles. Please take a few moments to read through the following reminders:

 

Sharing the road is key to safe driving, especially in the case of commercial motor vehicles. In crashes involving large trucks, the occupants of a car are much more likely to sustain injuries and fatalities. 

Keep these tips for driving around commercial motor vehicles in mind to help you safely share the road:

  • Commercial      vehicle drivers may not be able to see traffic directly in front of,      alongside, or close behind their vehicles. Large commercial trucks have      blind spots or “no zones,” spaces in which motorists should not linger      because they are not readily visible to the commercial driver. By hanging      out in a commercial vehicle’s “no zones,” you are essentially hidden from      the truck driver and this increases the chances that the truck could hit      you when it is changing lanes or turning. These “no zones” are in the      front, behind, and on both sides of the commercial vehicle. Stay out of      the “no zones.”
  • Commercial      vehicle drivers cannot stop or maneuver their vehicles as easily as a      passenger vehicle. They take longer to stop. A passenger vehicle traveling      at 55 mph can stop in about 130 feet to 140 feet. A commercial vehicle      traveling at the same speed takes 400 feet to stop.
  • Commercial      vehicles need room to make right turns. They may swing wide to the left to      safely negotiate a right turn. When you see a commercial vehicle with its      right turn signal on at an intersection, know that the truck is going to      make a wide right turn. Do not try to pass on the right-hand side or you      might get squeezed between the truck and the curb. With these dangers in      mind, stay behind trucks making right turns. 
  • Stay      behind the white stopping lines. They are there for a reason. If you stop      past the line, commercial vehicles will not be able to complete their      turns without hitting you.

These factors are the result of size and weight differences between the two types of vehicles, but vehicle size and weight do not cause crashes – drivers do.

Remember to:

•    Keep a safe distance behind a truck or bus. Following a commercial vehicle too closely greatly increases the chances of a rear-end collision. When your passenger vehicle is right behind a commercial vehicle, the driver cannot see it and it severely limits what you can see on the road ahead. Extend the distance between your vehicle and a commercial vehicle as weather or road conditions deteriorate.

•    When following a commercial vehicle, observe its turn signals before trying to pass. Cutting in between a commercial vehicle and the curb or shoulder to the right may result in a crash. If the commercial vehicle appears to be starting a left turn, wait and verify which way the driver is signaling before passing on the right.

•    Signal intended lane changes or turns well in advance. Never cut off a commercial vehicle, force it to slow down or stop suddenly.

•    Be careful when passing a commercial vehicle. Often, commercial vehicle drivers cannot see you. Allow enough time and distance to pass safely.

•    Roundabouts: Try not to pass or drive next to large vehicles.

•    Pass commercial vehicles on the left side and maintain a consistent speed when passing. Be sure you can see the entire cab of the truck in your rearview mirror before signaling and pulling in front of the commercial vehicle.

•    When passing a commercial vehicle or when one passes you, keep both hands on the steering wheel. Trucks can create strong air flow and draft when traveling at high speeds.

•    Never cross behind a commercial vehicle that is preparing to back up or is backing up. Remember, most trailers are eight-and-a-half feet wide and can hide a car completely, preventing the truck driver from even seeing your vehicle.

•    Stay behind the white stopping lines. They are there for a reason. If you stop past the line, commercial vehicles will not be able to complete their turns without hitting you.

•    When merging onto the freeway, commercial vehicles may not be able to move over, so match the flow of traffic as closely as possible, pick your spot and go.

•    When exiting the freeway, leave space between you and the vehicle in front of you. Plan your move early and always signal your intentions as soon as possible.

  • Be even more careful passing a truck with a trailer. Often, a driver must swing out to the left or right before making a turn. The driver may not see you and could force you off the road.
  • Slow down if a truck or bus is passing you, especially during bad weather. Splash or spray from their tires can reduce visibility. Start your wipers before the vehicle passes.

•    At night, use your low beams when following a truck or bus.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich

 


 

Weekly Update

July 24, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

27 Alarms 13 Drug Offenses
21 Assist Citizen 23 Check well beings
10 Domestic disputes 48 Shoplifting complaints
19 Larcenies 20 Motorist Assists
28 Operating while   impaired 12 Personal injury   crashes
21 Property damage   crashes 29 Suspicious   situations
19 Traffic hazards 253 Traffic stops
30 Traffic   violations 19 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 989 calls for service/events.

The Michigan Sheriff’s Association wants to make sure the citizens of Michigan are aware of financial scams targeting seniors. From the National Council on Aging, here is the Top 10 list: 

  1. Medicare/health insurance scams. In these types of scams, perpetrators may pose as a Medicare representative to get older people to give them their personal information, or they will provide bogus services for elderly people at makeshift mobile clinics, then use the personal information they provide to bill Medicare and pocket the money.

2.  Counterfeit prescription drugs. Most commonly, counterfeit drug scams operate on the Internet, where seniors increasingly go to find better prices on specialized medications.  The danger is that besides paying money for something that will not help a person’s medical condition, victims may purchase unsafe substances that can inflict even more harm.

3.  Funeral & cemetery scams. Scammers read obituaries and call or attend the funeral service of a complete stranger to take advantage of the grieving widow or widower. Claiming the deceased had an outstanding debt with them, scammers will try to extort money from relatives to settle the fake debts.

In one common scam of this type, funeral directors will insist that a casket, usually one of the most expensive parts of funeral services, is necessary even when performing a direct cremation, which can be accomplished with a cardboard casket rather than an expensive display or burial casket.

4.  Fraudulent anti-aging products. In a society bombarded with images of the young and beautiful, it’s not surprising that some older people feel the need to conceal their age in order to participate more fully in social circles and the workplace. After all, 60 is the new 40, right? Whether it’s fake Botox like the one in Arizona that netted its distributors (who were convicted and jailed in 2006) $1.5 million in barely a year, or completely bogus homeopathic remedies that do absolutely nothing, there is money in the anti-aging business.

5.  Telemarketing/phone scams. Perhaps the most common scheme is when scammers use fake telemarketing calls to prey on older people.  With no face-to-face interaction, and no paper trail, these scams are incredibly hard to trace. Also, once a successful deal has been made, the buyer’s name is then shared with similar schemers looking for easy targets, sometimes defrauding the same person repeatedly.

Examples of telemarketing fraud include:  The pigeon drop - The con artist tells the individual that he/she has found a large sum of money and is willing to split it if the person will make a “good faith” payment by withdrawing funds from his/her bank account. Often, a second con artist is involved, posing as a lawyer, banker, or some other trustworthy stranger. The fake accident or arrest ploy - The con artist gets the victim to wire or send money on the pretext that the person’s child or another relative is in the hospital or in jail sometimes in a foreign tourist destination and needs the money. Charity scams - Money is solicited for fake charities. This often occurs after natural disasters.

6.  Internet fraud. Pop-up browser windows simulating virus-scanning software will fool victims into either downloading a fake anti-virus program (at a substantial cost) or an actual virus that will open up whatever information is on the user’s computer to scammers. Their unfamiliarity with the less visible aspects of browsing the web (firewalls and built-in virus protection, for example) make seniors especially susceptible to such traps.  Email/phishing scams - A senior receives email messages that appear to be from a legitimate company or institution, asking them to “update” or “verify” their personal information. A senior receives emails that appear to be from the IRS about a tax refund.

7.  Investment schemes. Because many seniors find themselves planning for retirement and managing their savings once they finish working, a number of investment schemes have been targeted at seniors looking to safeguard their cash for their later years. From pyramid schemes like Bernie Madoff’s (which counted a number of senior citizens among its victims) to fables of a Nigerian prince looking for a partner to claim inheritance money to complex financial products that many economists don’t even understand, investment schemes have long been a successful way to take advantage of older people.

8.   Homeowner/reverse mortgage scams. Scammers like to take advantage of the fact that many people above a certain age own their homes. A particularly elaborate property tax scam in San Diego saw fraudsters sending personalized letters on behalf of the County Assessor’s Office. The letter, made to look official but displaying only public information, would identify the property’s assessed value and offer the homeowner, for a fee of course, to arrange for a reassessment of the property’s value and therefore the tax burden associated with it.

Closely related, there is the potential for a reverse mortgage borrower to be scammed. Scammers can take advantage of older adults who have recently unlocked equity in their homes.  Those considering reverse mortgages should be cognizant of people in their lives pressuring them to obtain a reverse mortgage, or those that stand to benefit from the borrower accessing equity, such as home repair companies who approach the older adult directly.

9.  Sweepstakes & lottery scams. Scammers inform their mark that they have won a lottery or sweepstakes of some kind and need to make some sort of payment to unlock the supposed prize. Often, seniors will be sent a check that they can deposit in their bank account, knowing that while it shows up in their account immediately, it will take a few days before the (fake) check is rejected. During that time, the criminals will quickly collect money for supposed fees or taxes on the prize, which they pocket while the victim has the “prize money” removed from his or her account as soon as the check bounces.

10. The grandparent scam. Scammers will place a call to an older person and when the mark picks up, they will say something along the lines of: “Hi Grandma, do you know who this is?” When the unsuspecting grandparent guesses the name of the grandchild the scammer most sounds like, the scammer has established a fake identity without having done a lick of background research. Once “in,” the fake grandchild will usually ask for money to solve some unexpected financial problem (overdue rent, payment for car repairs, etc.), to be paid via Western Union or MoneyGram, which don’t always require identification to collect. At the same time, the scam artist will beg the grandparent “please don’t tell my parents, they would kill me.”

If you suspect you’ve been the victim of a scam, don’t be afraid or embarrassed to talk about it with someone you trust. You are not alone, and there are people who can help. Doing nothing could only make it worse. Keep handy the phone numbers and resources you can turn to, including the local police, your bank (if money has been taken from your accounts), and Adult Protective Services. To obtain the contact information for Adult Protective Services in your area, call the Eldercare Locator, a government sponsored national resource line, at: 1-800-677-1116, or visit their website at: www.eldercare.gov.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich

 

 


 

Weekly Update

July 17, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

42 Alarms 15 Car/deer   accidents
24 Assist Citizen 25 Check well beings
21 Domestic disputes 49 Shoplifting complaints
24 Larcenies 19 Motorist Assists
19 Operating while   impaired 8 Personal injury   crashes
25 Property damage   crashes 31 Suspicious   situations
17 Traffic hazards 240 Traffic stops
33 Traffic   violations 9 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 967 calls for service/events.

With summer activities in full swing, there are more drivers than ever on Michigan roads and many of these are our teens. The Secretary of State has recently published a couple helpful items relating to teen drivers and parents of teen drivers that I didn’t want you to miss out on.

First are some tips from the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) offering resources to Michigan parents insuring teenage drivers. Insuring a teenage driver can be a significant additional cost for parents. Because statistics show that drivers under the age of 25 are involved in more car accidents, families with young drivers pay noticeably higher auto insurance premiums.

“Obtaining a driver’s license is an exciting time for teens. Along with this excitement and freedom comes the responsibility of operating a car,” said DIFS Director Patrick McPharlin. DIFS understands insurance can be hard to navigate and offers the following tips when insuring your teenage driver:

Notify your insurance agent/company when your teenager becomes a licensed driver.
Failure to notify your insurer could result in your insurance company retroactively rating your policy back to your most recent renewal date for the additional driver, causing a large amount of premium being owed on your next premium billing notice. Your insurer could also deny a claim or cancel your policy if you fail to notify them about all licensed drivers in the household, including teenage drivers.

Shop around.
Some insurance companies require that they be notified once a driver receives a learner’s permit, while others require notification when a driver receives their license. It is important to check with your insurance agent to find out your company’s requirements.

Look into all discounts available to you.
Making sure you have all the discounts offered by your insurance company could help minimize the impact of the addition of a teenage driver.

Consider revising your family’s coverage or deductibles.
You may be able to lower your premium by increasing the deductibles on collision and comprehensive coverage or by removing physical damage coverage on an older vehicle.

For more information on insuring your teen driverwhat teen drivers should know,  or general automobile insurance information or for more information about DIFS or the services provided, please visit the website at www.michigan.gov/difs, follow them on Twitter or “Like” them on Facebook.  

Secondly,   I wanted to let you know about the Parent's   Supervised Driving Guide. The Parent's Supervised Driving Guide   provides a practical and detailed instruction plan to help parents and their   teen drivers get the most out of the supervised driving requirement under   Michigan's Graduated Driving Licensing law. The material is designed for   behind-the-wheel supervision so it is clear, concise and easily put into   practice. 
   
  The guide begins with basic skills such as moving, stopping and steering and   progresses to more advanced skills such as anticipating the actions of other   drivers and avoiding crashes. It provides parents with the tools and   information they need to effectively coach their teen driver through the   complex task of learning to drive safely.
   
  This guide was created to address a need to improve roadway safety and teen   driving behaviors nationwide. In Michigan, this free guide is available to   parents and teens as a resource to enhance the required supervised driving   process. The underwriting by 
State Farm ® covers 100 percent of the   program's cost and allows them to share in the mission to improve teen   drivers' safety. 
   
  A copy of the guide is being provided to parents through Secretary of State   offices when they bring their teen in for a Graduated Level 1 Learner's   License. The guide is also available in 
PDF format
for anyone, including parents   that would like an additional copy or whose teen is already licensed.
 
 

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich

 


 

Weekly Update

July 10, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

49 Alarms 9 Car/deer   accidents
23 Assist   Citizen 25 Check   well beings
26 Domestic   disputes 24 Shoplifting   complaints
24 Larcenies 21 Motorist   Assists
18 Operating   while impaired 14 Personal   injury crashes
33 Property   damage crashes 38 Suspicious   situations
69 Traffic   hazards 250 Traffic   stops
38 Traffic   violations 7 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 1,074 calls for service/events.

This is so important that we had to share this article that recently appeared in USA Today - It's not easy to spot a drowning child. Know the signs.

Drowning usually happens quickly and quietly.  

It is the fifth leading cause of unintentional injury death in the U.S., and about one in five people who die of drowning are children 14 and younger, the CDC reports. Black children are the most at risk, according to a 2014 report

As families flock to pools and beaches this season, safety experts caution parents to be aware and watchful of their children. It's not easy to spot a child in need. Just take a look at spotthedrowningchild.com.   Stephanie Shook, senior manager instructor for Engagement & Quality Assurance for the American Red Cross, said it's easy for parents and supervisors to be distracted.  "Swimming is a really fun, healthy activity, but the deal is is that it takes place in a body of water that could take your life," she said. In the time it takes to post to Facebook, a person could miss a drowning.

Shook shared these signs of active drowning, when a person only has seconds before dying:

Silence. A child who is hyperventilating won't be screaming for help. They will be gasping for breath. Shook said to look at children's faces for panic or concern.

Head tilted back: Instinctively, the child will be trying to keep airways clear of water. While their body might be in a vertical position, water might be covering most of their face. 

Arms moving downward: "They are trying to get a hold of something that’s not there," Shook said. She described this movement like someone pushing up off a desk as they stand up from a chair. 

Floating face-down: Shook said if someone's body is horizontal and face-down for 30 seconds or more, be concerned. Don't mistake it for purposeful floating.

Also, keep an eye on kids jumping into the water. What Shook calls "plunge-downers" could cause the quickest drownings. This is when someone jumps into the water and doesn't come back up. That could be a child who might not know how to swim or even someone who can swim but hit an object going down. In these cases, drowning could happen immediately. 

These are the distress signs to look for (moments before an active drowning):

Wall-crawling: A child clinging to a wall, floatation device or pool line usually is too tired to swim or can't swim at all. 

Isolated: Any time somebody is alone in the water, especially a child, beyond arms-reach of an adult, there's a problem, Shook said. This can be especially disconcerting if the child is wearing water wings or a lifejacket, a signal they can't swim. 

Bobbing or treading water: If someone is moving, but making no progress, they could be in trouble. Shook said even if someone is a good swimmer, they might have drifted out too far, become tired or gotten a cramp. 

If it's clear someone is drowning or in distress, scream for a lifeguard and take action, rescue the person without putting yourself in danger. People unsure of their swimming abilities or the situation (think: ocean current) shouldn't go in after the child, because that could put another life at risk. But, Shook said they could toss the victim a floatation device. The key is to get the drowning person help immediately, because they might only be a few seconds away from death. 

Prevent water emergencies by making sure all family members know how to swim and the five steps of water competency. Find age-appropriate Red Cross swim lessons at redcross.org/takeaclass. When on vacation, Shook recommends adults take turns being the designated "water watcher," looking out for those swimming. Visit redcross.org for more water safety tips. 

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

July 3, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

30 Alarms 14 Car/deer   accidents
29 Assist Citizen 24 Check well beings
19 Domestic disputes 24 Shoplifting complaints
23 Larcenies 12 Motorist Assists
20 Operating while   impaired 7 Personal injury   crashes
29 Property damage   crashes 32 Suspicious   situations
25 Traffic hazards 279 Traffic stops
32 Traffic   violations 5 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 957 calls for service/events.

July and August bring us the warmest temperatures of the year. While we all look forward to enjoying the outdoors this time of year, it is important to be mindful of the following basic summer heat safety tips:

  • During the hottest hours of the day, stay inside an air-conditioned building if possible. The hottest hours of the day are typically from mid morning to      mid afternoon.
  • Dress lightly, and when sleeping, use lightweight, breathable covers.
  • Drink plenty of water and other fluids.  When temperatures climb above 90 degrees, it's important to drink at least a gallon of liquid per day,      preferably water. Those who are overweight and in humid conditions need even more.
  • Avoid drinking alcohol and beverages that are carbonated or contain caffeine when temperatures are high, as they can lead to dehydration.
  • Keep blinds and curtains closed from morning until the late afternoon to block extra direct heat from sunlight.
  • Move your exercise routine to early morning or later in the evening.
  • Never ever leave a person or a pet in the car in hot conditions while you run to do a quick errand. People and animals can succumb to heat exposure and death very quickly in a hot car. Cars can become overheated quickly and when overheated become like ovens. It's never safe.     
  • Properly supervise children during outdoor play, being sure to monitor them closely and frequently.
  • Seek medical care right away if you become nauseous, start vomiting or      experience cramps.
  • Stay on the lowest level of your home.
  • Use a fan. Don't place the fan directly in front of a window because it may      push hot air in. Try placing the fan so that it blows in the room and out      the window instead.
  • Use small appliances like slow cookers and tabletop grills rather than your traditional oven or stove to keep kitchen heat to a minimum.
  • Verify that seat belts and car seat restraints are not too hot before buckling      yourself or anyone else into a car.

Additional Tips for Elderly Persons: SourceElderly individuals are particularly at risk for heat exposure. A few special considerations for keeping elderly persons safe during the summer include the following:

  • Visit elderly family members or friends twice a day during the hottest months of the summer.
  • Help your elderly pal to get to know his or her neighbors because isolated older adults are at a much higher risk of heat-related health problems and      death.
  • Provide on-going education to elderly individuals. Go over topics such as heat exposure-related symptoms and where to call for help.
  • Investigate public community center solutions that have air conditioning and provide transportation for elderly individuals.
  • Work with utility company to ensure that electricity is not shut off during the hottest summer days.

It's important to know how to recognize the signs of heat exhaustion and heat exposure. Heat exhaustion signs will appear first, and then heat stroke signs:

  • Breathing that is shallow and fast
  • Clammy skin
  • Dizziness     
  • Dry mouth
  • Excessive sweating
  • Fainting     
  • Headache     
  • Loss of color in skin
  • Nausea     
  • Pale complexion
  • Pulse that is fast and weak
  • Skin that feels moist and cool (when touched)
  • Sweating     
  • Tiredness     
  • Vomiting     

If you see any of the above exhaustion signs, get out of the heat immediately. The person experiencing symptoms should be given plenty of cool fluids and be wiped down with cool cloths. If rapid improvement isn't seen, call 911 immediately.

Heat Stroke: The signs of major heat exposure, also known as heat stroke, include the following:

  • Dizziness     
  • Extremely high body temperature (over 103 degrees F)
  • Headache that is throbbing
  • Lack of sweating
  • Nausea     
  • Rapid pulse that is strong
  • Red skin that is hot and dry (when touched)

Heat stroke always requires medical attention. If you see any of the above exposure signs, get the person out of the heat immediately and take them to the nearest hospital or call 911.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich

 

 

June 2017


 

Weekly Update

June 26, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

29 Alarms 9 Car/deer   accidents
27 Assist Citizen 28 Check well beings
20 Domestic disputes 17 Shoplifting complaints
25 Larcenies 14 Motorist Assists
22 Operating while   impaired 6 Personal injury   crashes
26 Property damage   crashes 24 Suspicious   situations
32 Traffic hazards 257 Traffic stops
35 Traffic   violations 6 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 961 calls for service/events.

With school being out for the summer, graduation open houses, and summer vacation plans, probably the last thing you’re thinking about is Hunter Safety. The season will be here before you know it, and the first of our FREE Hunter Safety classes is scheduled for July 10, 11, and 13. This is a 3-night class at the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office from 6:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Please call Pat Barnes at 517-543-5257 to register.

PLAYGROUND AND BACKYARD SAFETY: Finally, our temperatures are warming up and the kids are itching to go outside. While having fun is foremost on the minds of children everywhere, outdoor safety is foremost on the minds of parents. Here are a few tips to keep those scrapped shins and elbows down to a minimum:

  • The playground should have safety-tested mats or loose-fill materials (shredded rubber, sand, wood chips, or bark) maintained to a depth of at least 9 inches (6 inches for shredded rubber). The protective surface should be installed at least 6 feet (more for swings and slides) in all directions from the equipment.
  • Equipment should be carefully maintained. Open "S" hooks or protruding bolt ends can be hazardous.
  • Swing seats should be made of soft materials such as rubber, plastic, or canvas.
  • Make sure children cannot reach any moving parts that might pinch or trap any body part.
  • Never attach—or allow children to attach—ropes, jump ropes, leashes, or similar items to play equipment; children can strangle on these.  If you see something tied to the playground, remove it, or call the playground operator to remove it.
  • Make sure your children remove helmets and anything looped around their necks.
  • Metal, rubber, and plastic products can get very hot in the summer, especially under direct sun.  Make sure slides are cool to prevent children's legs from getting burned.
  • Do not allow children to play barefoot on the playground.
  • Parents should supervise children on play equipment to make sure they are safe.
  • Parents should never purchase a home trampoline or allow children to use a home trampoline because of the risk of serious injury even when supervised.
  • Surrounding trampoline netting offers a false sense of security and does not prevent many trampoline-related injuries. Most injuries happen on the trampoline, not from falling off.
  • If children are jumping on a trampoline, they should be supervised by a responsible adult, and only one child should be on the trampoline at a time; 75% of trampoline injuries occur when more than one person is jumping at a time.
  • Homeowners should verify that their insurance policies cover trampoline-related claims. Coverage is highly variable and a rider may need to be obtained.
  • If you don’t have a fenced yard, teach your child the boundaries within which sh should play. Always have a responsible person supervise outdoor play.
  • Check your yard for dangerous plants. Among preschoolers, plants are a      leading cause of poisoning. If you are unsure about any of the plants in your yard, call your local Poison HelpLine (1–800–222–1222) and request a list of poisonous plants common to your area. If you have any poisonous plants, either replace them or securely fence and lock that area of the yard away from your child.
  • Teach your child never to pick and eat anything from a plant, no matter how good it looks, without your permission. This is particularly important if you let her help out in a vegetable garden where there’s produce that could be eaten.
  • If you use pesticides or herbicides on your lawn or garden, read the instructions carefully. Don’t allow children to play on a treated lawn for at least forty-eight hours.
  • Don’t use a power mower to cut the lawn when young children are around. The mower may throw sticks or stones with enough force to injure them. Never have your child on a riding mower even when you are driving. It is safest to keep young children indoors while the lawn is being mowed.
  • When you cook food outdoors, screen the grill so that your child cannot touch it, and explain that it is hot like the stove in the kitchen. Store propane grills so your child cannot reach the knobs. Be sure charcoal is cold before you dump it.
  • Never allow your child to play unattended near traffic, and do not allow them to cross the street by themselves, even if it is just to go to a waiting school bus.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich

 

 


 

Weekly Update

June 5, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

28 Alarms 21 Car/deer   accidents
21 Assist Citizen 16 Check well beings
16 Domestic disputes 48 Shoplifting complaints
19 Larcenies 7 Motorist Assists
15 Operating while   impaired 8 Personal injury   crashes
26 Property damage   crashes 32 Suspicious   situations
20 Traffic hazards 228 Traffic stops
42 Traffic   violations 12 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 923 calls for service/events.

Nothing says summer like family and friends coming together for a backyard BBQ. With kids playing tag, Frisbees being tossed, water balloons being thrown, and volleyball teams being picked, safety around the proximity of the flaming BBQ grill can be forgotten while the games are being played. I want to remind you of some of the Do’s and Don’ts of BBQ grill safety –

DO’S -

  • Keep your grill at least 10 feet away from your house. Farther is even better. This includes portions attached to your house like carports, garages and porches. Grills should not be used underneath wooden overhangs either, as the fire could flare up into the structure above. This applies to both charcoal and gas grills.
  • Clean your grill regularly. If you allow grease and fat to build up on your grill, they provide more fuel for a fire. Grease is a major source of flare ups.
  • Check for gas leaks. You can make sure no gas is leaking from your gas grill by making a solution of half liquid dish soap and half water and rubbing it on the hoses and connections. Then, turn the gas on (with the grill lid open). If the soap forms large bubbles, that's a sign that the hoses have tiny holes or that the connections are not tight enough.
  • Keep decorations away from your grill. Decorations like hanging baskets, pillows and umbrellas look pretty AND provide fuel for a fire. To make matters worse, today's decor is mostly made of artificial fibers that burn fast and hot, making this tip even more important.
  • Keep a spray bottle of water handy. That way, if you have a minor flare-up you can spray it with the water to instantly calm it. The bonus of this tip is that water won't harm your food, so dinner won't be ruined!
  • Keep a fire extinguisher within a couple steps of your grill. And KNOW HOW TO USE IT. If you are unsure how to use the extinguisher, don't waste time fiddling with it before calling 911. Firefighters say many fire deaths occur when people try to fight a fire themselves instead of calling for expert help and letting the fire department do its job.

DON'TS:

  • Turn on the gas while your grill lid is closed. NEVER do this. It causes gas to build up inside your grill, and when you do light it and open it, a fireball can explode in your face.
  • Leave a grill unattended. Fires double in size every minute. Plan ahead so that all of your other food prep chores are done and you can focus on grilling.
  • Overload your grill with food. This applies especially fatty meats. The basic reason for this tip is that if too much fat drips on the flames at once, it can cause a large flare-up that could light nearby things on fire.
  • Use a grill indoors. People often think it will be safe to use a grill, especially a small one, indoors. NOT TRUE. In addition to the fire hazard, grills release carbon monoxide, the deadly colorless, odorless gas. That gas needs to vent in fresh air or it can kill you, your family, and pets.
  • Allow playing in the vicinity of the grill. Little kids running to daddy for protection from being tagged while daddy is at the grill flipping hamburgers should never be allowed. Teaching your kids at an early age about the dangers of playing near BBQ grills is a lesson you will never regret.

Practicing and enforcing these Do’s and Don’ts will help ensure the steaks and ribs you prepared with your own secret sauce will be added to the list of things that made this family time special.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

 

Weekly Update

May 29, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

35 Alarms 20 Car/deer   accidents
24 Assist Citizen 20 Check well beings
17 Domestic disputes 37 Shoplifting complaints
16 Larcenies 13 Motorist Assists
13 Operating while   impaired 8 Personal injury   crashes
23 Property damage   crashes 33 Suspicious   situations
27 Traffic hazards 280 Traffic stops
31 Traffic   violations 11 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 998 calls for service/events.

Just a quick reminder that our next FREE Boating Safety class is scheduled for June 12, 13, and 15, from 6:00-9:00 p.m. at the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office. Please call 517-543-5257 register.

With the unofficial start of summer upon us, many families look forward to playing in the family pool, spending weekends at the family cottage, or trips to one of our state’s beautiful Great Lakes. I wanted to take this time to remind you of basic rules to follow for safe swimming. Drowning is the second leading cause of accidental death in children ages 1-19, and most of these happen in swimming pools.

Learn How to Swim – Formal swimming instruction is recommended for most children age 4 and older. Teens and adults who don't know how to swim should learn to do so and restrict wading or bathing to shallow water only and in the presence of a lifeguard.

Supervise Children - Children should never be allowed to swim unsupervised by adults anywhere. Drowning can happen quickly and silently in as little as 2 inches of water. Most accidental drownings of children ages 1 to 4 occur in residential pools and most of those victims were reported seen within the home less than five minutes prior while in the care of at least one parent. Adults who are supervising children should remain alert, vigilant and never turn away or get distracted, not even for a moment.

Swim Only When a Lifeguard Is on Duty - When swimming in bodies of water other than residential pools, swim only when a lifeguard is on duty and in areas designated for swimming. Parents of young children and non-swimmers should carefully supervise their children even in settings where a lifeguard is present. All swimmers should respect the rules for swimming in a given environment and follow the directives of the lifeguard.

Do Not Swim Under the Influence of Drugs or Alcohol - Even strong swimmers can succumb to the effects of alcohol and drugs while in the water. Being under the influence of either or both seriously impairs judgment and coordination and increases the risk of injury or drowning.

Never Swim Alone - As tempting as it may be to catch some time alone in the backyard pool, deserted lake or ocean, do not do it. Accidents happen even to young, strong, healthy individuals who are good swimmers. Always swim with a buddy in a residential pool and with a lifeguard present in any other pool or body of water.

Do Not Swim During Thunderstorms - Never swim during a thunderstorm. Follow lifeguard instructions for exiting the pool. If swimming in a residential pool, exit the water immediately when you hear thunder. Lightning often strikes water and water conducts electricity. If you swim and lightning strikes, you risk serious injury or death.

Avoid Diving Headfirst - Do not dive headfirst into shallow or murky water, or water of uncertain depth. Diving in shallow water can cause injuries and drowning. Diving into murky water such as ponds, quarries or lakes without knowing the depth or underwater environment is dangerous. Rocks and other objects in the water pose hazards. It is best to enter the water feet first.

Refrain From Horseplay in the Water - As fun as it is to swim with friends or family, refrain from horseplay such as dunking, hanging on to someone, or allowing them to hang on to you while in the water. Horseplay can lead to injury while in the water, thus increasing the risk of drowning.

Use Proper Flotation Devices - The American Academy of Pediatrics warns that inflatable toys, rafts, air mattresses, and water wings should never be used as lifesaving devices for children and that only life jackets and life preservers approved by the U.S. Coast Guard should be used. Always wear an approved life jacket when boating, even close to land.

First Aid, CPR and Pool Fences - It is a good idea for adults, especially those who are parents or who care for children, to learn basic first aid and CPR. Rescue measures can mean the difference between life and death, especially for families with residential pools. The CDC recommends four-sided pool fences at least 4 feet high with self-closing, self-latching gates unreachable by children and that open outward.

Following these basic water safety rules is just one of the ways you and your family will enjoy a fun-filled summer, and don’t forget the sunscreen.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

May 22, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

39 Alarms 20 Car/deer   accidents
24 Assist Citizen 27 Check well beings
12 Domestic disputes 43 Shoplifting complaints
15 Larcenies 14 Motorist Assists
18 Operating while   impaired 7 Personal injury   crashes
29 Property damage   crashes 29 Suspicious   situations
28 Traffic hazards 227 Traffic stops
45 Traffic   violations 3 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 946 calls for service/events.

There are signs all around us that summer is just around the corner. The kids are counting the days until school is out, the first of three long holiday weekends is nearly upon us, and plans have begun for those much anticipated and well deserved summer vacations. I wanted to take this time to pass along a few reminders of things you can do to keep your home safe while you’re away.

  • ·Never make it public knowledge that you’ll be out of town. Don’t post your plans social media or elsewhere online where strangers would find out you won’t be home.
  • Don’t take your trash and recycling to the curb so the empty can is left out while you’re gone. Ask a neighbor to put them out and bring them back in on time while you’re gone.
  • ·Never leave a key where it can be found.
  • ·Avoid leaving your driveway empty. If you’re taking your car, ask a neighbor to park theirs in your driveway. If you leave your car in the driveway, take the garage door opener out.
  • Make sure every window and door is locked.
  • If you have a security system, make sure it is activated before you leave. It’s also a good idea to alert your security company to your plans to be away from home so they’ll be extra alert for any activity.
  • Ask a neighbor to watch your home while you’re away. A trusted neighbor can keep an eye on your home and make it look like someone is home. Have them take care of watering plants, bringing in your mail, rotating which lights are on, and removing fliers from your door. Of course, be sure to pay them back by returning the favor when they go out of town, or bring them a nice gift back from your travels.
  • Hire a pet sitter instead of using a kennel. They are more expensive, but burglars will see a car in the driveway, lights on, and maybe even hear animals barking — all signs that someone’s home and it’s a bad time to break in.
  • Set interior lights and even your TV on a timer so that it looks like you’re still at home.
  • Install motion sensitive lights on essential entry points. A motion sensitive light can spook a burglar into thinking you really are home — and you’ve turned the lights on them.
  • Mow your lawn and sweep away leaves before you leave, and if you have a lawn service, don’t cancel it.
  • Hold your mail and newspaper or ask a neighbor to collect these.
  • Complete an Eaton County Sheriff’s Office Vacation Check Request form. This can be found on our website, .
  • If you normally keep your window coverings open, don’t shut them all up as you’re leaving. This is a sure sign that you’re not home.
  • Hide valuables: If a burglar makes it into your home, chances are good they’ll want to get in and out quickly. While you might not be able to stow away your TV, it is a good idea to move jewelry, portable, electronics, and other valuable items out of burglary hot spots. Typically, burglars will hit the living room and master bedroom immediately, so kids’ rooms, bathroom drawers, even your garage may be a safer place to store valuables. If you have a safe, that’s also a good option, as long as it is bolted into your home and difficult to simply take and pick apart elsewhere.

These precautions can help ensure the memories you create from your vacation will be good ones.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


Weekly Update

May 8, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

24 Alarms 18 Car/deer   accidents
32 Assist Citizen 29 Check well beings
17 Domestic disputes 57 Shoplifting complaints
21 Larcenies 10 Property Damage   Hit and Run
14 Operating while   impaired 8 Personal injury   crashes
24 Property damage   crashes 27 Suspicious   situations
25 Traffic hazards 233 Traffic stops
44 Traffic   violations 5 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 950 calls for service/events.

REMINDER – The second of our five FREE Boating Safety classes will be held May 15, 16 and 18 from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office Training Room. This is the class you’ll want in order to have your Boating Safety certificate before the Memorial Day Weekend. It’s not too late to sign-up. Classes are for all ages. Please call Patrick Barnes at 517-543-5257 to register.

I also wanted to introduce you to National Police Week – This week honors the service and sacrifice of U.S. law enforcement officers and is held May 11–17 each year in Washington, D.C. If you are fortunate enough to visit Washington, D.C., the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial is a “must see”. It is centered in the 400 block of E Street, NW, Washington, D.C., and is the nation’s monument to law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty. Dedicated on October 15, 1991, the Memorial honors federal, state and local law enforcement officers who have made the ultimate sacrifice for the safety and protection of our nation and its people. The Memorial features two curving, 304-foot-long blue-gray marble walls. Carved on these walls are the names of more than 20,000 officers who have been killed in the line of duty throughout U.S. history, dating back to the first known death in 1791. The Eaton County Sheriff’s Office has the names of three of our Deputies on the wall: Dep. Cleo Platt-end of watch December 17, 1972; Dep. Dean Foster-end of watch January 1, 1967; Dep. Donald Rice-end of watch December 10, 1985.

Each year our nation loses between 140-160 law enforcement officers in the line of duty.   Surviving families and co-workers take part and are honored in a number of events throughout National Police Week. Some of the major events are a Candlelight Vigil hosted by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.  During this service, the newly engraved names of fallen officers is read. Concerns of Police Survivors hosts the National Police Survivors’ Conference and part of this conference is a kids/teen program for the surviving children and siblings of the fallen officer. The Fraternal Order of Police and Auxiliary hosts the National Peace Officers’ Memorial Service on the west front lawn of the U.S. Capitol on May 15th where the surviving family members will have an opportunity to place a flower in a wreath honoring their fallen officer.

Another moving tribute honoring fallen officers is the Police Unity Tour. This started in May 1997 with 18 riders on a 4-day fundraising bicycle ride from Florham Park, NJ, to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C. This first year $18,000 was raised. The Police Unity Tour has steadily grown to 9 chapters consisting of over 2,200 members nationwide who make the trip annually and total donations to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial have risen to over $20,000,000. Their motto is “We Ride For Those Who Died.” Eaton County has a team of 5 Deputies who hold fund raising events so they are able to take part in this event each year.

In 2011 the Police Unity Tour became the official sponsor of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund’s “Officer of the Month Program”. Officers of the Month are honored at a special awards luncheon each May in Washington, D.C., during National Police Week, and they are featured in the Memorial Fund’s annual calendar.   The Eaton County Sheriff’s Office was honored to have this recognition bestowed in February 2014 on then Lieutenant, now Chief Deputy Timothy Jungel.

Aside from all that National Police Week stands for, many citizens of Eaton County go out of their way to send an email, a letter, a facebook post, call the Sheriff’s Office, or stop in to show and express their heartfelt appreciation for an act of kindness and professionalism displayed by one our Deputies. These expressions of your gratitude do not go unnoticed and mean a great deal to me and the staff. We are proud to serve you.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

May 1, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

34 Alarms 13 Breaking and   Entering
26 Assist Citizen 27 Check well beings
13 Domestic disputes 30 Shoplifting complaints
17 Larcenies 8 Property checks
20 Operating while   impaired 4 Personal injury   crashes
20 Property damage   crashes 24 Suspicious   situations
27 Traffic hazards 278 Traffic stops
40 Traffic   violations 12 Vacation checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 957 calls for service/events.

May is designated as Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month to call attention to the dangers and vulnerabilities motorcyclists face on the road. With spring upon us and summer approaching the number of motorcyclists on the roads we share increases. It is important for both motorists and motorcyclists to be aware of one another.

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Motorcyclists are much more vulnerable to crashes than other drivers. In 2007, the mileage death rate for motorcyclists in 2007 was 37 times greater than for passenger car occupants. Motorcycle safety also is an issue of increasing concern – fatalities involving drivers and motorcyclists increased 131 percent between 1998 and 2008, according to NSC.

Throughout Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, NSC encourages motorists to share the road with motorcyclists and be extra alert when they are nearby. The National Safety Council (NSC) offers six tips to help drivers and motorcyclists alike stay safe on the roads this May and all year long. These tips include:

1. Passenger car drivers must allow greater following distance behind a motorcycle.
2. Drivers also must show extra caution in intersections. Most crashes occur when a driver

     fails to see a motorcyclist and turns left in front of a motorcycle.

3. Drivers should never try to share a lane with a motorcycle. Always give a motorcycle the

     full lane width.
4. Motorcyclists should avoid riding in poor weather conditions.
5. Motorcyclists should position their motorcycles to avoid a driver's blind spot.
6. Motorcyclists must use turn signals for every turn or lane change.

Many crashes occur because motorcycles are hidden in a vehicle's blind spot. Drivers should always make a visual check for motorcyclists by checking mirrors and blind spots before entering or leaving a lane of traffic. To better defend themselves, motorcyclists should follow the rules of the roadway and wear protective gear, including a Department of Transportation compliant helmet.

Another recognition held this month is National Correctional Officers’ Week. In 1984, President Ronald Reagan signed Proclamation 5187, creating “National Correctional Officers’ Week.” Each year, the first full week in May is recognized as National Correctional Officers and Employees Week, commemorating the contributions of correctional officers and personnel who work in jails, prisons, and community corrections across the country.

Working in correctional facilities is demanding as personnel must maintain a constant state of heightened vigilance and adhere to strict security protocols. Additionally, corrections staff must perform their duties within harsh physical environments and with the threat of repeated exposure to violent events.

I am proud to say the Corrections staff at the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office are highly trained professionals. They work under stressful circumstances at times while ensuring the safety of themselves and inmates alike. Additionally, they must follow the guidelines set forth by the Michigan Department of Corrections and the policies in place in our facility. Their task is never easy and they are most deserving of having this week dedicated to spotlighting their vocation.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

April 24, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

34 Alarms 13 Car/deer   accidents
18 Assist   Citizen 23 Check   well beings
18 Domestic   disputes 53 Shoplifting   complaints
13 Larcenies 17 Motorist   Assists
17 Operating   while impaired 6 Personal   injury crashes
29 Property   damage crashes 30 Suspicious   situations
26 Traffic   hazards 258 Traffic   stops
46 Traffic   violations 14 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 977 calls for service/events.

REMINDER – The first of our FREE Boating Safety classes will be held May 1, 2 and 4 from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office Training Room. It’s not too late to sign-up. Classes are for all ages. Please call Patrick Barnes at 517-543-5257 to register.

Prom season is upon us. We all want Prom Night to be a night of memories our teens will cherish the rest of their lives. Prom Night is one of the most anticipated nights of the year for teens and one of the most dreaded for parents. Most teens heading off to their prom will tell parents that they know everything there is to know about drinking and driving and all the other hazards that can occur. Yet, every year we witness a number of tragic prom night events which destroy lives and mar what would otherwise be a joyous time. But it doesn't have to be that way, and following a few basic and common sense safety rules can make all the difference, without stopping anyone from having a good time. Here are some basic safety tips for teens and parents as the big night approaches.

TIPS FOR TEENS -

  • Whether you like it or not, underage drinking is illegal, even on Prom Night. It can lead to arrest, injury or worse. 
  • Don't get into any vehicle where anyone has been drinking, taking drugs or has a weapon. 
  • Don't let a friend drive or get into a vehicle where the operator has been drinking.
  • Don't accept drinks from anyone you don't know.  If you leave your drink, discard it and get a new one. 
  • Know where you are and where you are going at all times and let your parents know of any change in previously agreed upon plans.
  • Trust your instincts.  If you feel uncomfortable or endangered, leave immediately and call for help  

TIPS FOR PARENTS -  

  • Talk to your teen about the dangers of alcohol and drug use, which include arrest, loss of scholarships, injury, date rape, automobile accidents or worse.
  • Discuss guidelines and curfews as well as the consequences for violations. 
  • Know who is driving your teen to the prom and all who will be passengers in the vehicle.
  • Know the location of pre and post-prom parties and who is sponsoring them. 
  • Remind your teen that you will provide a “no consequence” way for them to get away from a dangerous situation or place if they call you.
  • It is against the law to provide or make alcohol available to anyone under the age of 21.  Violations can result in criminal charges and/or civil liability.
  • If hosting a prom related party, make sure a responsible adult is present at all times and stays visible until the party is over.
  • Anyone who leaves the party will not be allowed to return. 
  • When your teen attends a party at some other location, contact the responsible adult ahead of time to verify the place and time, that a responsible adult will always be there and no alcohol or drugs will be permitted.
  • Let your teen know that you will be up waiting for them to get home to ensure their safety.

No matter how strong the family relationship, many parents are unaware of the choices their teens face every day.  Don't take for granted that your teen is different. Research consistently shows that parents remain a powerful influence in fostering healthy teen development and preventing negative outcomes.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

April 17, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

34 Alarms 18 Car/deer   accidents
17 Assist   Citizen 19 Check   well beings
11 Domestic   disputes 27 Shoplifting   complaints
22 Larcenies 19 Motorist   Assists
15 Operating   while impaired 3 Personal   injury crashes
33 Property   damage crashes 28 Suspicious   situations
32 Traffic   hazards 323 Traffic   stops
35 Traffic   violations 17 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 1,002 calls for service/events.

Next week is National Volunteer Week. Volunteers play a vital, active role on behalf of the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office, and I am extremely grateful for the services they provide. Our volunteer teams consist of the Mounted Division and ATV, Motorcycle, Chaplain, Handicapped Parking, Victim Advocates, and Special Services units. These units help with traffic control at various parades and festivals throughout the county and the annual 4th of July fireworks event held in Delta Township, and Victim Advocates are called upon to assist individuals and families during a time of personal crisis or tragedy. These are just a few of the ways volunteers in each of these units provide an invaluable service to citizens throughout the county.

As Sheriff of Eaton County, I have been privileged to name the following people as Eaton County Sheriff’s Office Volunteers of the Year:

            2013 – Mary Clark, Victim Advocate Unit

            2014 – Mark Shoemaker, Volunteer in Polices Services Coordinator

            2015 – Lloyd Scharer, Chaplain and Victim Advocate Units

            2016 – Daniel Sowles, Assistant Coordinator and Special Services Unit

The volunteers of the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office complete an extensive training course held over several weeks. These volunteers are dedicated, highly motivated, and respected by the Deputies and citizens they assist, and we are very proud of them and the services they perform.

This is a yearly week of recognition for the many, many people in the U.S. and Canada who give generously of their time and resources to a huge variety of causes. The week has a history in Canada dating back to the time of the Second World War, when women were celebrated for their part in supporting the war effort on the home front. In the United States, President Nixon established National Volunteer Week in 1974. Each year, the current president issues a special proclamation in honor of volunteers. A number of awards are presented for outstanding service including the President’s Volunteer Service Award and the Points of Light Tribute Awards.

The week is used to bring awareness to the contributions of volunteers and to encourage more people to donate their time to a local, national, or global cause. Take advantage of this week to nominate someone you admire for a volunteering award, share about your favorite cause on social media, and find an opportunity to volunteer yourself!

Also, don’t forget the 77th Annual Vermontville Maple Syrup Festival is April 28-30! We are the home of the orginal Maple Syrup Festival in Michigan.

The festival starts Friday evening, continues through Saturday and Sunday and is always held during the last full weekend in April, and the citizens of Vermontville go out of their way to make this a fun-filled weekend for the entire family. There is something for everyone – Mid-America rides, talent show, arts and crafts, flea market, two parades, petting zoo, princess pageant, various displays, games, free entertainment, a pancake derby, and arm wrestling. Our syrup producers are located throughout the village selling syrup, candies, crème and the ever popular maple syrup cotton candy.

We invite you to join us and enjoy the pancakes with real maple syrup offered by the Maple Valley Band Boosters and the American Legion.

Hope to see you there!

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

April 10, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

29 Alarms 14 Car/deer   accidents
12 Assist   Citizen 23 Check   well beings
15 Domestic   disputes 30 Shoplifting   complaints
15 Larcenies 22 Motorists   Assist
8 Operating   while impaired 5 Personal   injury crashes
38 Property   damage crashes 18 Suspicious   situations
52 Traffic   hazards 270 Traffic   stops
39 Traffic   violations 17 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 937 calls for service/events.

The Eaton County Sheriff’s Office Meth Team wants you to be aware - With the weather getting warmer we are finely able to get out of the house and stretch our legs. With the warmer weather and the thawing snow there is one potential hazard we all need to be aware of.   There are people out there that manufacture meth themselves using plastic bottles as makeshift lab equipment.   The chemicals used in making meth are very dangerous and could cause some very serious health problems for anyone who comes in contact with them.   The contents can also be flammable; these bottles should not be moved at all.   You might not see any bottles, but you may come across a bag or a backpack. This should be left alone as well. These “home cooks” use backpacks to store these makeshift labs or sometimes discard the bottles in the trash and leave it on the side of the road or in the woods. Please, if you see something like this, call the Sheriff’s office.

Some things to look for that you should avoid. A bottle with a tube coming out of the top, a bottle with sludge in the bottom, a bottle with anything in it other than the liquid that came in it, and a bottle that looks like it’s under pressure should all be avoided. Any bottles that are next to any chemicals or batteries should also be avoided.

With winter behind us, now is a good time to prepare for other severe weather occurrences that may come upon us. Next week is Severe Weather Awareness Week. What better time to review with your family such plans as getting to your safe place during a tornado warning, where emergency supplies are kept, and conducting drills to ensure everyone knows exactly what to do during a potential severe weather emergency.

An essential item to have prepared is a basic emergency supply kit which could include the following recommended items:

  • Water, one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days,      for drinking and sanitation
  • Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
  • Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Dust mask to help filter contaminated air and plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • Manual can opener for food
  • Local maps
  • Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger

FEMA suggests the following additional items to consider adding to your emergency supply kit:

  • Prescription medications and glasses
  • Infant formula and diapers
  • Pet food and extra water for your pet
  • Important family documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account records in a waterproof, portable container
  • Cash or traveler’s checks and change
  • Emergency reference material such as a first aid book
  • Sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person. Consider additional bedding since we live in a cold-weather climate.
  • Complete change of clothing including a long sleeved shirt, long pants and sturdy shoes. Consider additional clothing for protection against cold-weather.
  • Household chlorine bleach and medicine dropper – When diluted nine parts water to one part bleach, bleach can be used as a disinfectant. Or in an emergency, you can use it to treat water by using 16 drops of regular household liquid bleach per gallon of water. Do not use scented, color safe or bleaches with added cleaners.
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Matches in a waterproof container
  • Feminine supplies and personal hygiene items
  • Mess kits, paper cups, plates and plastic utensils, paper towels
  • Paper and pencil
  • Books, games, puzzles or other activities for children.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

April 3, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

26 Alarms 10 Car/deer   accidents
15 Assist   Citizen 12 Check   well beings
17 Domestic   disputes 31 Shoplifting   complaints
21 Larcenies 14 Motorist   Assists
18 Operating   while impaired 12 Personal   injury crashes
23 Property   damage crashes 25 Suspicious   situations
22 Traffic   hazards 217 Traffic   stops
26 Traffic   violations 19 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 869 calls for service/events.

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Technology allows us to make phone calls, dictate texts or emails and update social media while driving – all actions that are proven to increase crash risk. The National Safety Council observes April as Distracted Driving Awareness Month to draw attention to this epidemic. NSC wants to empower you to put safety first and Just Drive.

Technologies Can Reduce Cell Phone Distracted Driving - More than 3,000 people are killed on U.S. roads every year in distracted driving crashes, the federal government reports. Cell phone use is a common driver distraction. About 70% of drivers report using cell phones despite knowing phones can be a crash risk. 

Did you know technology exists that could prevent many of those crashes and save thousands of lives?

Cell phone blocking apps and devices can help drivers stay focused on driving. They prevent drivers from making or accepting calls, texting or accessing the internet.

What is Cell Phone Blocking Technology? Cell phone blocking technology is most often an app for smartphones and is available from wireless services and companies that specialize in these apps.

The most basic technologies prohibit calls or texts while a vehicle is in motion. More advanced systems are capable of blocking audio features, and tracking speed and sudden stops. Many send text or email notifications, providing helpful information for parents of teen drivers.

Who Uses It? This technology is used most often by parents of teen drivers and employers. All of these devices can be effective tools for employers to use in enforcing cell phone policies or in everyday situations to reduce driver temptation. In a public opinion poll conducted by the National Safety Council, 82% of Americans said they felt the most pressure from their families to use phones while driving. Even teen drivers report feeling pressure from families, as well as friends.

As a family, take the National Safety Council’s pledge to “Just Drive”: I pledge to be an attentive driver:

I pledge to Take Back My Drive for my own safety and for others with whom I share the roads. I choose to not drive distracted in any way – I will not:

  • Have a phone conversation – handheld, hands-free, or via Bluetooth
  • Text or send Snapchats
  • Use voice-to-text features in my vehicle’s dashboard system
  • Update Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vimeo, Vine or other social media
  • Check or send emails
  • Take selfies or film videos
  • Input destinations into GPS (while the vehicle is in motion)
  • Call or message someone else when I know they are driving

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

March 27, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

35 Alarms 9 Car/deer   accidents
13 Assist   Citizen 23 Check   well beings
12 Domestic   disputes 27 Shoplifting   complaints
9 Larcenies 10 Motorist   Assists
23 Operating   while impaired 7 Personal   injury crashes
36 Property   damage crashes 17 Suspicious   situations
13 Traffic   hazards 244 Traffic   stops
35 Traffic   violations 21 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 896 calls for service/events.

In the early morning hours on March 21, 2017, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office Deputies conducted a search warrant at a residence on East Street in Olivet.   Deputies seized methamphetamine manufacturing lab components, materials and suspected methamphetamine. Deputies arrested the two residents, a 33-year-old male and a 23-year-old female (who was also wanted for two Bench warrants). Charges are being sought from the Eaton County Prosecutor’s Office for Felony-Operating/maintaining methamphetamine manufacturing lab, Felony-possession with intent to deliver methamphetamine, and Domestic assault (male suspect).

April 2-8 is National Crime Victim’s Rights Week. The theme this year is Strength * Resilience * Justice. There are so many valuable resources available to victims of crime. The Office for Victims of Crime (www.ovc.gov) has an excellent resource guide that features online training for crime victims, counselors, and legal service providers. There are resource materials available for victims of not only violent crimes, but also those affected by identity theft, human trafficking, and elder abuse just to name a few. There is a National calendar of events and an online directory of crime victim services that lists more than 10,000 programs nationwide helping crime victims and service providers locate non-emer­gency services in the United States and abroad.

Another of the resources listed I wanted to let you know about is Victim Connect (www.victimconnect.org). VictimConnect is a national helpline and program of the National Center for Victims of Crime and provides confidential referrals for all victims of crime in the United States. Crime victims can connect with resources, access referrals, and craft next steps to regain control of their lives. VictimConnect has a special focus on populations, crimes, and topics that are generally underrepresented or underserved in victim services. The website includes a searchable referral directory and overviews of specific types of crime as well as information about self-care, options, and rights. Victims can connect with a victim assistance specialist during business hours by chat at www.victimconnect.org or by phone or text at 855-4-VICTIM (855-484-2846).

Many of us know people who are victims of crime and many emotions surface when our friends and loved ones are affected. It is a comfort to know there are an extensive number of resources available to everyone involved to help all of you through the difficult times.

Just a Reminder - Spring Break also starts for many of our community school districts this week. Wherever your plans take you, please be safe, enjoy the time with your family, and bring back special memories.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich

                     


 

Weekly Update

March 20, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

26 Alarms 18 Car/deer   accidents
25 Assist   Citizen 20 Check   well beings
11 Domestic   disputes 17 Shoplifting   complaints
16 Larcenies 15 Motorist   assists
17 Operating   while impaired 12 Personal   injury crashes
39 Property   damage crashes 16 Suspicious   situations
15 Traffic   hazards 240 Traffic   stops
24 Traffic   violations 26 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 878 calls for service.

Spring Break will soon be upon us and many of you may be planning a family getaway for the week. I wanted to make you aware of a few safety tips to ensure you and your family enjoy your time together to the fullest -

Vacation is a time for much deserved relaxation and having fun. Preparing for a family trip requires a lot of planning, and planning can decrease the chances of becoming a victim of a crime. Tourists make tempting targets for thieves; often lost or distracted, weighed down with bags, carrying cameras, money and other valuables. It is best for you and your family to do all you can to blend in with the crowd. Here are some suggestions for keeping you and your family safe when planning your next family trip.

  • Before you go, make sure to clean out your wallet or purse; take only essential credit cards.
  • Carry your purse close to your body, or wallet in an inside front pocket. Consider wearing a money pouch under your clothes.
  • Pack as lightly as possible. Lots of heavy, cumbersome bags will slow you down and make you more vulnerable to getting robbed.
  • Expensive, designer luggage can draw unneeded attention to your belongings. Pack your things in inconspicuous bags.
  • Carry-on anything you may need or of value, i.e., medication, jewelry. Don't display expensive jewelry, cameras, bags and other valuable items.
  • If you’re planning on traveling by car, check the fluids, belts, hoses, tire pressure, etc., before you leave home. Have your route planned in advance, and let other family members know the route.
  • Stick to well-lighted, well-travelled streets at all times.
  • Always lock your car and leave valuables out of sight, preferably locked in the trunk.
  • Don't leave jewelry, money or other items lying around the hotel room when you go out, even for a short while. Lock them in the room or hotel safes. Do not leave them unattended at poolside or the beach either.
  • Make sure rooms are securely locked and chains fastened wherever possible. Do not leave room keys lying out at the swimming pool.
  • You should know who is knocking before you answer the door. If they say they are from the hotel, confirm with the hotel operator that they are in fact from the hotel.
  • Always lock the door while in the room.

Just these few steps can ensure that when you get home, what you’ll be talking about most is the great time you had together and the memories you made.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


Weekly Update

 

March 13, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

37 Alarms 15 Car/deer   accidents
18 Assist   Citizen 17 Check   well beings
12 Domestic   disputes 34 Shoplifting   complaints
17 Larcenies 20 Motorist   assists
11 Operating   while impaired 3 Personal   injury crashes
31 Property   damage crashes 14 Suspicious   situations
120 Traffic   hazards 307 Traffic   stops
25 Traffic   violations 35 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 1,061 calls for service.

Beware of this Year's   Tax-Scams –    


  I recently received the following information from the Michigan Sheriffs’   Association who wants to make sure the citizens of Michigan are aware of this   year's tax-related scams.  The IRS recently released the top-12 scams,   referred to by the IRS as the “Dirty Dozen”, that taxpayers may   encounter.  They include:

      
  1. Phishing
  2.   
  3. Phone Scams
  4.   
  5. Identity Theft
  6.   
  7. Return Preparer Fraud
  8.   
  9. Fake Charities
  10.   
  11. Inflated Refund Claims
  12.   
  13. Excessive Claims for Business Credits
  14.   
  15. Falsely Padding Deductions on Returns
  16.   
  17. Falsifying Income to Claim Credits
  18.   
  19. Abusive Tax Shelters
  20.   
  21. Frivolous Tax Arguments
  22.   
  23. Offshore Tax Avoidance

For   an in-depth description of each of the “Dirty Dozen” please refer to their   website, www.IRS.gov.

If   you have been the victim of any of these scams, please contact Det. Roberts,   Eaton County Sheriff’s Office Fraud Investigator, at 517-816-8199 to file a   complaint.

A few weeks ago I mentioned all the FREE recreational safety classes held at the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office. Our next ones coming up are our FREE Boating Safety classes. These classes are held at the Sheriff’s Office, 1025 Independence Blvd, Charlotte, in the Dep. Donald E. Rice Training Room. One class is three nights, and the hours are from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Below are the dates of our scheduled classes:

       May 1, 2, and 4, 2017

        May 15, 16, and 18, 2017

        May 30, 31, and June 1, 2017

        June 12, 13, and 15, 2017

        June 19, 20, and 22, 2017

This is a course for all boaters, the personal watercraft operator; the hunter or fisherman operating an outboard utility boat; the skipper of a family ski boat; the sailing enthusiast.  All boaters must follow the same nautical rules, regulations and courtesies of the water.  All are subject to the same forces of nature while boating.

As boating is often a family activity, the course is of value to all members of a boating family. Quite often we get calls because grandpa and grandma or mom and dad have recently bought a boat for the whole family to enjoy and the whole family takes a class together. There is no age limit to register.

Qualified, enthusiastic and experienced instructors provide instruction as a public service.  There is never a charge for instruction.  While the content of the student manual serves as the basis for this course, it will also serve as a reference book in basic boating long after the course work is completed.  The course meets the educational standards of NASBLA, the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, and features a final examination as required by Michigan Law.

Please call Patrick Barnes at 517-543-5257 to register.  

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


 

Weekly Update

March 6, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

24 Alarms 12 Car/deer   accidents
18 Assist   Citizen 10 Check   well beings
14 Domestic   disputes 27 Shoplifting   complaints
14 Larcenies 14 Property   checks
6 Operating   while impaired 8 Personal   injury crashes
34 Property   damage crashes 18 Suspicious   situations
25 Traffic   hazards 324 Traffic   stops
25 Traffic   violations 41 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 919 calls for service/events.

REMINDER: As a sign that spring is nearly here, on Sunday, March 12th, daylight savings time begins. Don’t forget to turn your clocks ahead 1 hour. While it means you’ll lose 1 hour of sleep, just think of all the new things spring brings.

With spring just around the corner, many of you may be thinking about home improvement projects. Spring can also bring out the scam artists each with their own special way of trying to take your hard-earned money and tax return. If you’ve ever hired a contractor for a home improvement project, then you know how confusing it can be. Project estimates can vary wildly, and each of the contractors seem so sincere when they tell you that their price and service is the best.

While most are honest, good-intentioned businesspeople, you do need to be wary of home improvement scams. Scams have always existed, but they’re becoming so commonplace that even primetime television networks, such as Dateline are calling attention to them. What’s worse is that oftentimes these scammers target Senior citizens. If you’re thinking about embarking on a home improvement project, here are five of the latest scams and how to recognize them.

1. Bait and Switch
This is perhaps the most common scam out there, and it’s wildly successful because it appeals to the human desire to get a great deal. The scam usually starts with a newspaper ad or a mailer that advertises a service at a ridiculously low price, such as an air duct cleaning for $49.99. The consumer gets it and believes that they have a chance to get a service that they need for a low price, so they call the company. That’s where the switch comes in. Once the technician arrives, he proceeds to explain to the homeowner that his air ducts, or carpets, or roof, or whatever the case may be, are in much worse condition than the average. He then quotes them a different price – one that’s hundreds or sometimes thousands of dollars over the advertised price. The bottom line? If a price seems too good to be true, it probably is.

2. Left-Over Product
Some dishonest contractors knock on unsuspecting homeowners doors and make them an offer they can’t refuse. They explain to them that they’ve recently finished another job and have some left-over material, and if they don’t use it, they’ll just have to throw it away. Driveway sealers use this scam a lot, and explain that the sealant can’t be stored once it’s mixed. They tell the homeowner that since they already have the materials, they’ll offer them a low price if they agree to have the work done.

But what the homeowners don’t know is that the contractor didn’t just come from another job, and the “materials” that he’s using are generally substandard, and in some cases could even cause damage to the property. For example, a contractor who promises a bargain driveway sealant may just be using black paint or an array of other materials that will simply wash off in the next rain. An honest contractor will never knock on your door and offer to sell you unused materials at a discounted rate.

3.   Roving Contractors
There are bands of contractors who travel county to county offering their services by knocking on doors and telling the homeowners that they’re doing a lot of jobs in their neighborhood and asking if they want to hire them as well. But what they don’t mention is that they don’t have the proper licenses, training, or experience to get the job done. In addition, these contractors will be unable to get the required permits, so if anything goes wrong with the work, you – and not the contractor – will be held responsible. At the very least, you’re likely to end up with shoddy or even unfinished work.

4.   Up-Front Payment
Another scam to be on the lookout for is the contractor who asks you for a large up-front payment, or in some cases, the total payment, before the work even begins. Most of these scam artists will simply take the money and run – leaving the homeowner with empty pockets and a job that is never even started. A reputable contractor may ask for a small deposit, but most payments will be paid at the completion of the job, or for very large projects, in stages as the work is completed.

5.   Low Price, Bad Service
Finally, there is a type of contractor who consistently runs advertising that promotes low-ball prices for services. It’s important to remember that when you’re paying a low price for a service, you’re likely getting only the basics, and most of the time, that amounts to a little bit of nothing.

Be careful and take your time in choosing the right contractor. Start with a plan and have some idea of what you want, interview them, get recommendations from friends, family, co-workers, or neighbors who have had work done, ask if you can talk to current clients, check their licensing status, and choose the right contractor for the right project. These are just a few of the things you can do to protect your home and wallet. A home renovation project can be stressful enough; you will be so glad you took the extra steps in ensuring your project turns out as you pictured it.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


Weekly Update

 

February 27, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

31 Alarms 15 Car/deer   accidents
19 Assist   Citizen 17 Check   well beings
15 Domestic   disputes 26 Shoplifting   complaints
18 Larcenies 10 Motorist   assists
17 Operating   while impaired 7 Personal   injury crashes
16 Property   damage crashes 22 Suspicious   situations
27 Traffic   hazards 282 Traffic   stops
29 Traffic   violations 23 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 940 calls for service.

This week I wanted to let you know about the types of FREE recreational safety classes held at the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office throughout the year. To kick off our 2017 series of classes is an ORV/ATV Safety class. The class is scheduled for Tuesday-Wednesday, April 18 & 19, from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. in the Dep. Donald E. Rice Training Room at the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office in Charlotte. An ORV safety certificate is required for riders 16 years of age and younger. As the year progresses, I’ll pass along the dates and times of our Boating, Hunter, and Snowmobile Safety classes. If you would like to reserve a spot in the ORV/ATV safety class, please call Patrick Barnes at 517-543-5257.

Did you know the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office has two “Exchange Zones”? One in the front parking lot of the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office at 1025 Independence Blvd., in Charlotte, and one at our Delta Substation located at 7708 Administrative Drive, in Lansing behind the Delta Township Fire Station. The zones are under video camera surveillance and are designated for those who wish to use them for child custody exchanges and private property transactions.

I am pleased to offer these exchange zones at the Sheriff’s Offices for parents to exchange custody of their children and for others who wish to make private property transactions (excluding weapons), with the knowledge that the meetings are being video recorded by the Sheriff’s Office.

Daylight hours are best for exchanges and transactions when possible.

Those of us working in law enforcement have seen an increase in the number of calls for service from family members and other citizens asking for assistance dealing with someone with a mental illness. I wanted to take a minute to tell you about an organization established to provide support and resources to family members and those suffering from mental disorders – National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). While they are a national organization, we are fortunate to have a chapter in Lansing.

NAMI is dedicated to improving the lives of individuals and families who are affected by neurobiological brain disorders through support, education, advocacy, and research. NAMI Lansing provides support and advocacy for affected persons and family members in the Greater Lansing area.

Their vision is to build a community of support.  NAMI Lansing reaches out with compassion to persons with mental illness and their families who may at times feel alone, overwhelmed, or hopeless, to connect them to resources, support, and hope.  NAMI Lansing recognizes the depth of love required when dealing with mental illness. NAMI Lansing exists to educate people of the need for research, system reform, and improved supports for those with mental illness and their families.  Education promotes acceptance and hope for recovery. NAMI Lansing exists to advocate for legal and policy changes that would improve the lives of those with mental illness and their families. NAMI Lansing promotes research about mental illness and the application of research to improve the lives of families and individuals.

If you know of a friend or family who may benefit from all this organization has to offer, their website is www.nami-lansing.org. They have a calendar showing many opportunities to meet others. Special events are highlighted on the News page with details on their Blog, along with support groups and educational opportunities.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


Weekly Update

 

February 21, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

31 Alarms 14 Car/deer   accidents
20 Assist   Citizen 12 Check   well beings
16 Domestic   disputes 36 Shoplifting   complaints
10 Larcenies 12 Motorist   assists
15 Operating   while impaired 8 Personal   injury crashes
21 Property   damage crashes 26 Suspicious   situations
19 Traffic   hazards 291 Traffic   stops
27 Traffic   violations 40 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 900 calls for service.

The Eaton County Sheriff’s Office annual Awards Ceremony was held Monday, February 13th. This annual event is always well attended and the following awards were proudly presented:

Bravery- Dep. Andrew Jenkins, entered a burning home rescuing 3 family members

 

Life Saving- Dep. Joshua Turner, rendered first aid to a shooting victim who recovered from his

                        injuries

 

Meritorious Service- Sgt. Robert Block/Sgt. Chris Kuhlman/Sgt. Ross Tyrell/Dep. Nick Newton,

pursued an armed suspect through a residential area, coordinating multiple

agencies to ensure the public’s safety

 

Meritorious Service- Det. Ted Johnson/Det. Jim Maltby/Det. Aaron Roberts, and Letters of Commendation- Det. Chris Burton/Det. Rick Buxton/Det. Troy Gardner, murder investigation

 

Professional Excellence- Capt. Adam Morris/Dep. Aaron Campbell/K-9 Cash, efforts in identifying

                                           and capturing Case Credit Union armed robbery suspects and one Citizen

                                           Meritorious Action Award for exceptional assistance in identifying the

                                           suspects.           

 

 

Citizen Meritorious Action Award- to two citizens’ efforts that led to the capture of an armed

                                                                 robbery suspect of a gas station

 

Citizen Life Saving- Ms. Macy Mauk/Ms. Aliyana Smith, efforts in saving a family member when a

                                    car they were working on fell on the chest of the victim

 

Certificate of Appreciation- Mrs. Rachel & Mr, Joseph Sturdevant, efforts in coming to the aid of an

                                                   elderly citizen who became stranded when her motorized scooter ran

                                                   out of battery power on her way back from buying food

 

Letter of Commendation- Det. Aaron Roberts/Dep. Adam Holliday/Dep. Nabil Kanazeh/Dep.

                                             Ashley Schwartz, investigating credit card cloning and skimming incidents

                                                that led to numerous suspects, many from out of state, being charged both

                                                federally and locally

 

Letter of Commendation- Sgt. Ross Tyrell/Sgt. Chris Kuhlman/Dep. Chris Cunningham/Dep.

                                                Garrett Schlossberg/MSP Sgt. John Faccio/Tpr. Michael Baker, efforts in

                                                capturing a violent family member who was possibly armed and injured a

                                                Deputy while resisting arrest.

 

Letter of Commendation- D/Sgt. Josh Ivey/Det. Rick Buxton, efforts in arresting a shooting suspect

                                                who had a stolen handgun with an extended magazine hidden on him

                                                while resisting the arrest.

 

Letter of Commendation- Sgt. Scott Brooks, for the development, planning and implementation of a

                                             comprehensive active violence practical training scenario conducted at the

                                             Charlotte High school. Many area police, fire, and EMS agencies

                                             participated along with area school officials, Hayes Green Beach Hospital

                                             and the American Red Cross.

 

Letter of Commendation- Sgt. Ross Tyrell, rescued a child from their home when a car that was

                                             fleeing from a traffic stop lost control and crashed into the house.

The evening culminated in presentation of Employee of the Year being awarded to Executive Assistant Theresa O’Dell and Deputy of the Year being awarded to Det. Rick Buxton.

Have you heard of the Do 1 Thing program? Do 1 Thing is a web-based 12-month preparedness program that focuses on a different area of emergency preparedness each month, and provides a range of preparedness options for each topic. Every month has a low or no-cost option to become better prepared. They give you a choice of three things you can do, then you choose one. You can jump in at anytime. If you do 1 thing each month, by the time a year has passed, you will have taken big steps towards being ready for the unknown. Being prepared for disasters and emergencies can seem like a big job. Many people don't know where to start, so they never start at all. With Do 1 Thing you can take small steps that make a big difference in an emergency.

The Do 1 Thing emergency preparedness program makes it easy for you to prepare yourself, your family, your business, and your community for emergencies or disasters. It is free and easy to sign up at www.do1thing.com. This website provides a wealth of information, including articles, brochures, power point presentations, and the following fact sheets tailored to individuals and businesses.

Topics for individuals include: Make a Plan, Water, Sheltering, Food, Work, School and Community, Unique Family Needs, Family Communication Plan, Get Involved, Be Informed, Power, Emergency Supplies, and First Aid.

Topics for businesses include: Risk Assessment, Essential Business Functions, Facilities, Insurance, Vital Resources, Key Personnel, Communication, Community, Personal Preparedness, Emergency Plans, Exercise, and Recovery.

You owe it to yourself and your family to look at the types of emergency preparedness things you all can do together to be safe should there ever be a need. Do 1 Thing is a great resource to get you started on the right track.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


Weekly Update

February 14, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

31 Alarms 17 Car/deer   accidents
20 Assist   Citizen 18 Check   well beings
23 Domestic   disputes 26 Shoplifting   complaints
10 Larcenies 14 Motorist   assists
10 Operating   while impaired 6 Personal   injury crashes
24 Property   damage crashes 17 Suspicious   situations
20 Traffic   hazards 223 Traffic   stops
22 Traffic   violations 34 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 855 calls for service.

On 2/5/17 Eaton County Deputies were dispatched to a Personal Injury Hit and Run on Saginaw Hwy. Upon investigation one vehicle swerved causing an oncoming vehicle to hit the driver’s side. The oncoming vehicle continued on. The vehicle that swerved was issued a citation for improper lane use, and the oncoming vehicle will be cited for leaving the scene of an accident.

On 2/7/17 an Eaton County Deputy witnessed a vehicle make an illegal left turn from Mall Drive East to eastbound Saginaw. The Deputy attempted a traffic stop for the illegal left turn. With the patrol vehicle’s overhead lights activated, the subject pulled over to turn into the Chase Bank parking lot. As the Deputy was advising Dispatch of his traffic stop and was attempting to give out a plate on the vehicle, it continued through the Chase Bank parking lot, went onto Breton Rd, and turned south back towards Saginaw. The Deputy then activated his siren and began pursuit of the vehicle. The subject was driving erratically down Saginaw turning onto Elmwood, then back onto Saginaw and turned abruptly into the mall lot. The suspect vehicle then lost control, went over the curb, and came to rest in the Applebee’s parking lot. The suspect and a passenger exited the vehicle and started to run. After a short foot chase the driver was taken into custody.

This week I wanted to let you know about the types of FREE recreational safety classes held at the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office throughout the year. To kick off our 2017 series of classes is an ORV/ATV Safety class. The class is scheduled for Tuesday-Wednesday, April 18 & 19, from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. in the Dep. Donald E. Rice Training Room at the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office in Charlotte. An ORV safety certificate is required for riders 16 years of age and younger. As the year progresses, I’ll pass along the dates and times of our Boating, Hunter, and Snowmobile Safety classes. If you would like to reserve a spot in the ORV/ATV safety class, please call Patrick Barnes at 517-543-5257.

Did you know the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office has two “Exchange Zones”? One in the front parking lot of the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office at 1025 Independence Blvd., in Charlotte, and one at our Delta Substation located at 7708 Administrative Drive, in Lansing behind the Delta Township Fire Station. The zones are under video camera surveillance and are designated for those who wish to use them for child custody exchanges and private property transactions.

I am pleased to offer these exchange zones at the Sheriff’s Offices for parents to exchange custody of their children and for others who wish to make private property transactions (excluding weapons), with the knowledge that the meetings are being video recorded by the Sheriff’s Office.”

Daylight hours are best for exchanges and transactions when possible.

Safety Tips:  Avoid Thawing Lakes & Rivers: 

With temperatures fluctuating wildly, ice that was safe yesterday may be dangerous today.

The Michigan Sheriff’s Association and the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office want to make sure the citizens of Michigan stay safe on our lakes and rivers. Ice must be five inches thick to hold the weight of a person and eight inches thick for snowmobiles and off-road vehicles. 

If you find yourself on thin ice, remembering the following tips could save your life.

  • If you hear the ice crack, have your group spread out. Everyone      should immediately lie down to distribute the weight on the ice more      evenly, then crawl on your belly to safer ice.
  • If someone falls through the ice, do not run to the hole. Call 911      and then use a pole, branch, rope, or other long object to try and reach      the victim.
  • If you fall through the ice, stay calm. Call out for help and kick      your feet while getting hands and arms up onto safer ice. Ice picks or screwdrivers      can help you get a grip on the ice. Continue to swim up onto the ice until      you can crawl or roll out onto the ice to safety.

Pets that go out on ice are a major cause for many near-drownings and deaths. If your pet has wandered onto dangerous ice, do not follow them. Stay where you are and coax them back to safety.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


Weekly Update

February 7, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

36 Alarms 12 Car/deer   accidents
15 Assist   Citizen 20 Check   well beings
20 Domestic   disputes 39 Shoplifting   complaints
13 Larcenies 27 Motorist   assists
16 Operating   while impaired 8 Personal   injury crashes
54 Property   damage crashes 14 Suspicious   situations
29 Traffic   hazards 259 Traffic   stops
9 Traffic   violations 35 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 922 calls for service.

On February 2nd, Dep. Stopczynski was assisting an MSP Trooper on a traffic stop on Saginaw Hwy at Canal Rd when he was struck by an oncoming pickup truck that fled the scene. Sheriff’s Deputies and the MSP Trooper were able to stop the vehicle at the Meijer gas station. He was subsequently arraigned on OWI, Failing to Stop at the Scene of an Accident Causing Injury, and Fleeing and Eluding Police Officer Felony 4th Degree.

This week I want to share with you an exceptional website devoted to teen drivers and keeping them safe – www.driveithome.org. Something all us drivers have in common is at one time we were all teen drivers. I’m sure we can remember the feeling of finally being old enough to drive a car while at the same time being unaware of what responsibilities went along with that privilege.

The safest—and best—way for teen drivers to gain experience is for parents to ride with them frequently and monitor their progress. Just 30 minutes a week with you as a passenger in the car can make a big difference. Remember that the skills you use in these situations are a result of years of experience, and your teen needs to acquire that experience by learning with you.

Night Driving - With Michigan winters and daylight savings time, it gets dark as early as 5:30 p.m. As night falls, it’s harder to see and to be seen. Even familiar surroundings look different seen under street lights and lit up by headlights. It’s no wonder crash rates increase for everyone at night—not just teens. Mile for mile though, 16 and 17 year old drivers are about three times as likely to be involved in a fatal car crash at night than during the day—and they don’t have to be out super late. The research shows that almost 16% of teen driving fatalities (ages 15 – 19) happen between 9PM and midnight. Remember, fatigue can start to set in as well.

That doesn’t mean that teens shouldn’t experience night driving at all; they need to develop this skill through practice. The best approach is to give your teen plenty of opportunities to learn how to drive at night—with you (or an adult supervisor) in the car. If this isn’t possible, then only very gradually should you extend the hours they are allowed to keep the car out as they gain experience over the course of their first year. As a reminder, below are the age and time restrictions Michigan has in place for our young drivers:

                                                                                                                                                           

   State      Learner stage      Intermediate stage:
   restrictions on driving
   while unsupervised
  
   Unrestricted stage:
   when restrictions
   may be lifted
  
         Minimum
   entry
   age
  
   Mandatory
   holding
   period
  
   Minimum amount
   of supervised
   driving
  
   Minimum
   age
  
   Unsupervised
   driving
   prohibited
  
   Restriction on passengers
   (family members excepted
   unless otherwise noted)
  
   Nighttime
   restrictions
  
   Passenger
   restrictions
  
   State      Learner stage      Intermediate stage:
   restrictions on driving
   while unsupervised
  
   Unrestricted stage:
   when restrictions
   may be lifted
  
         Minimum
   entry
   age
  
   Mandatory
   holding
   period
  
   Minimum amount
   of supervised
   driving
  
   Minimum
   age
  
   Unsupervised
   driving
   prohibited
  
   Restriction on passengers
   (family members excepted
   unless otherwise noted)
  
   Nighttime
   restrictions
  
   Passenger
   restrictions
  
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
                 
MI 14, 9 months33 6 months 50 hours, 10 of   which must be at night 1634 10 p.m.-5 a.m. no more than 1   passenger younger than 21 6 months and age 17   or until age 18 (min. age 17) 6 months and age 17   or until age 18 (min. age 17)

Distracted driving - You can imagine how difficult it is for a new driver to drive while talking on the phone or texting. But those aren’t even the highest driving risks for teens. Having other young passengers in the car is the number one most dangerous driving behavior for teens. Talk with your new driver about all potential distractions—inside and outside of the vehicle. Some examples of outside distractions are reading interesting signs, events on the side of the road – including crashes, and beautiful scenery. These distractions are hard to avoid. Help remind new drivers to keep their eyes moving and scan the road. When our teens are driving, they must stay focused on the task at hand: Driving. One of the best ways for them to learn is to watch you drive—distraction free. Remember that your behavior sets the example for your teen.

Drowsy Driving - There is another type of impairment that drivers face and one that is especially dangerous for teens – fatigued or drowsy driving. Other impairments like alcohol or drugs—especially prescription or over the counter medications—can cause drowsiness, but more often than not, it comes down to getting (or not getting) enough sleep.

A tired driver is a dangerous driver. There were 846 known fatalities related to drowsy driving in 2014, and far more incidents involving injuries and property damage. This is a serious issue and parents and teens need to keep a few things in mind. Like many of us (and maybe even more than some adults), teens have busy schedules. There’s school, homework and hanging out with friends and family. Your teen is probably involved in extracurricular activities at school and they might even have a job, too. With all that going on is your teen getting enough rest before hitting the road?  Teens need 8-10 hours of sleep every night to function at their best, but most aren’t getting that much. When it comes to driving, it’s important because studies show that only 6 hours of sleep is enough to increase the crash risk for a teen.

 If your teen is driving during or after a long day without sleep, the effects are even worse. Driving without sleep can be like driving drunk. Studies have shown that being awake for 18 hours is the equivalent to having a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .05%. If your teen pulls an all-nighter and then heads straight into the weekend, being awake for 24 hours is the equivalent to having a BAC of .10%—higher than the legal limit!

Having a plan is the best defense. With early school start times and packed schedules, make sure your teen has enough sleep before getting behind the wheel in the morning. If your teen has an afterschool job and gets out of work late, encourage them to give you a call and ask for a ride. Treat drowsiness as you would impaired driving and let your teen know that if they’re feeling tired, it’s better to call for a ride than to get behind the wheel.

Speeding - We’ve all done it at some point in our driving life. We’ve gone 50 mph in a 40 mph zone, to “keep up with traffic”. More commonly, teens drive too fast even when they’re driving slower than posted the speed limit—it can still be too fast in poor driving conditions like rain and snow. You know that when visibility is poor and roads are slippery, reducing your speed below the limit gives you more control over the car. That’s something you learned from experience—experience your teen doesn’t yet have.

You teen might follow too closely or pass other vehicles when it isn’t safe. When traffic is moving faster or slower than the posted speed limit, your experience lets you know how you should adjust to this traffic. Does your teen know how to adjust? New teen drivers have yet to learn how their car will react in different traffic and weather situations. They often don’t know what is appropriate, and they don’t fully understand the risks.

When you’re out driving with your teen, expose them to different traffic flows and road conditions so they can gain experience. Let them experience being the only car on the road, and as they gain experience, one of many in heavier traffic. How does traffic adjust their response to the posted speed limit? Take them out on a rainy or snowy day and let them learn how the car reacts with less traction and how reducing speed can help them better control the car in these conditions.

The www.driveithome.org website also contains many helpful, informative facts, tips, and suggestions to help you keep your teen driver safe. It has a blog and driving lessons also. I have only touched on a few. Please take a few minutes to read how you and your teen can work together to make them safe drivers.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


Weekly Update

January 31, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

14 Alarms 18 Car/deer   accidents
23 Assist   Citizen 27 Check   well beings
13 Domestic   disputes 26 Shoplifting   complaints
15 Larcenies 11 Motorist   assists
17 Operating   while impaired 19 Personal   injury crashes
79 Property   damage crashes 21 Suspicious   situations
23 Traffic   hazards 205 Traffic   stops
20 Traffic   violations 20 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 874 calls for service.

Mark your calendars! The Eaton County Sheriff’s Office third annual 5 O 5K Run will be held on Sunday, May 7th at Sharp Park in Delta Township. Contact the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office at 517-543-5019 for more information.

With this January giving us warmer temperatures and melting our snow, there is still February and March before us as a reminder that winter is far from over. The slick roads, need for window scrapers, shovels and snow blowers, needing extra time to bundle up the kids, and giving yourself extra time to get to work will return.

I wanted to take this opportunity to remind you of ways to protect yourself from frostbite and hypothermia. Both conditions are caused by excessive exposure to low temperatures, wind or moisture. Cold weather can be dangerous for anyone who enjoys outdoor winter sports, and people who work outdoors during winter must be particularly mindful of the risks.

Before venturing outside in winter, be sure to:

  • Check the temperature and limit your time outdoors if it's very cold, wet or windy
  • Bundle up in several layers of loose clothing
  • Wear mittens rather than gloves
  • Cover your ears with a warm hat
  • Wear socks that will keep your feet warm and dry

Frostbite - Even skin that is protected can be subject to frostbite. It's the most common injury resulting from exposure to severe cold, and it usually occurs on fingers, toes, nose, ears, cheeks and chin. If caught early, it is possible to prevent permanent damage. If not, frostbite can lead to amputation. If you suspect frostbite:

  • Get indoors immediately
  • Seek medical attention
  • Remove constrictive clothing and jewelry that could impair circulation
  • Place dry, sterile gauze between toes and fingers to absorb moisture and keep them from sticking together
  • Elevate the affected area to reduce pain and swelling
  • For superficial frostbite, you may also place the affected area in water that is 100 to 105 degrees until the tissue softens

Hypothermia - Hypothermia occurs when the body's temperature drops below 95 degrees. Severe shivering, one of the first signs of hypothermia, is beneficial in keeping the body warm. But as hypothermia progresses, shivering gives way to drowsiness or exhaustion, confusion, shallow breathing, irregular heartbeat, slurred speech, loss of coordination and, eventually, unconsciousness and even death. So what should you do if you encounter someone suffering from hypothermia?

  • Move the victim inside and remove any wet clothing
  • Call for medical attention
  • Add blankets, pillows, towels or newspapers beneath and around the victim
  • Cover the victim's head
  • Handle the victim gently to avoid cardiac arrest
  • Keep the victim in a horizontal position
  • If necessary, give CPR

None of these steps are a substitute for proper medical care. Be sure to seek medical attention for frostbite and hypothermia as soon as possible.

If You Go To Extremes - If you're considering taking the Polar Plunge, make sure to consult a doctor first to determine if you have any underlying health problems. The enormous shock of these types of activities puts a strain on the heart, doctors say. Keep in mind:

  • Cold shock will have you gasping for air
  • Blood flow will divert to your organs
  • You may become paralyzed or weak
  • Blood pressure increases due to constricted blood vessels, causing greater risk of stroke

Winter is fun. So go make those snow angels, take your family sledding, ski the slopes, snowmobile the trails, and build those snowmen and snow forts, just make sure to limit exposure and bundle up.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


Weekly Update

January 24, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

26 Alarms 19 Car/deer   accidents
16 Assist   Citizen 15 Check   well beings
14 Domestic   disputes 29 Shoplifting   complaints
15 Larcenies 20 Motorist   assists
10 Operating   while impaired 6 Personal   injury crashes
34 Property   damage crashes 25 Suspicious   situations
17 Traffic   hazards 185 Traffic   stops
21 Traffic   violations 21 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 804 calls for service.

The Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards (MCOLES) recently announced it has released a community survey to help gauge public trust as it works to complete a study for Gov. Rick Snyder.

On Oct. 4, 2016, Gov. Snyder issued Executive Directive 2016-2, telling MCOLES to “undertake a study and produce by May 1, 2017, a public report addressing the topic of fostering public trust in law enforcement.”

MCOLES is a state commission that sets standards for the law enforcement profession in Michigan, including recruiting, training, and professional licensing (www.michigan.gov/mcoles).

“Community engagement and community policing activities can advance the legitimacy of law enforcement across the state. Only through community partnerships can law enforcement reduce crime and disorder at the local level,” said Commission Chair Sheriff Jerry Clayton, “The report will offer practical steps that can be taken to strengthen police community relations and enhance the legitimacy of law enforcement in Michigan.”

When completed, the report will offer a set of recommendations to strengthen public trust and confidence in law enforcement in communities across Michigan. The goal is to determine how residents and law enforcement can work together to make local communities safe and secure.

The governor also directed MCOLES to “consider the status of community relationships and what factors can impact the public’s trust.” In order for the recommendations to be meaningful MCOLES is seeking input from residents across the state.

A short survey is now available online for residents to comment on how to advance police-community relations in their area. All communities are not the same and local residents have unique issues and concerns that need to be addressed. Responses will be organized and evaluated by Commission workgroups and the comments will form the basis for the final recommendations of the report.

Because it is important to MCOLES to ensure that all regions of the state and all segments of a community are being heard, the survey concludes with a request for your zip code.  MCOLES has also asked for your voluntary answers to age, race and gender, which allows us to ensure we have reached all segments within the state. The information provided in the survey will be anonymous and submission will not be tracked.

To take the survey online, visit: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ExeDir2016-2. The link will remain open until March 20, 2017. I appreciate your interest and welcome your comments.

Eaton County is a wonderful county to raise a family. All communities throughout the county truly care about the well-being of their residents and law enforcement agencies within those communities are fortunate to work cohesively with the common goal of ensuring your public safety. We wouldn’t have it any other way.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


Weekly Update

January 17, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

38 Alarms 28 Car/deer   accidents
19 Assist   Citizen 14 Check   well beings
16 Domestic   disputes 48 Shoplifting   complaints
13 Larcenies 23 Motorist   assists
10 Operating   while impaired 8 Personal   injury crashes
52 Property   damage crashes 20 Suspicious   situations
43 Traffic   hazards 194 Traffic   stops
20 Traffic   violations 27 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 863 calls for service.

With tax season upon us, now is a good time to remind ourselves to be extra diligent of scam artists claiming to be working on behalf of the IRS. The IRS website, www.IRS.gov, has posted several on their website for you to be aware of, and it is an excellent source of the information on the latest scams focusing on taking your identity and tax refund. The following are just a few:

IRS-Impersonation Telephone Scams

An aggressive and sophisticated phone scam targeting taxpayers, including recent immigrants, has been making the rounds throughout the country. Callers claim to be employees of the IRS, but are not. These con artists can sound convincing when they call. They use fake names and bogus IRS identification badge numbers. They may know a lot about their targets, and they usually alter the caller ID to make it look like the IRS is calling. Victims are told they owe money to the IRS and it must be paid promptly through a pre-loaded debit card or wire transfer. If the victim refuses to cooperate, they are then threatened with arrest, deportation or suspension of a business or driver’s license. In many cases, the caller becomes hostile and insulting. Or, victims may be told they have a refund due to try to trick them into sharing private information. If the phone isn't answered, the scammers often leave an “urgent” callback request.

Note that the IRS will never:

  • Call to demand immediate payment using a specific payment method such as a prepaid debit card, gift card or wire transfer. Generally, the IRS will first mail you a bill if you owe any taxes.
  • Threaten to immediately bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.
  • Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
  • Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.

Remember: Scammers Change Tactics -- Aggressive and threatening phone calls by criminals impersonating IRS agents remain a major threat to taxpayers, but variations of the IRS impersonation scam continue year-round and they tend to peak when scammers find prime opportunities to strike.

Surge in Email, Phishing and Malware Schemes -The IRS saw an approximate 400 percent surge in phishing and malware incidents in the 2016 tax season.

Scam emails are designed to trick taxpayers into thinking these are official communications from the IRS or others in the tax industry, including tax software companies. These phishing schemes can ask taxpayers about a wide range of topics. Emails can seek information related to refunds, filing status, confirming personal information, ordering transcripts and verifying PIN information.

Variations of these scams can be seen via text messages, and the communications are being reported in every section of the country.

When people click on these email links, they are taken to sites designed to imitate an official-looking website, such as IRS.gov. The sites ask for Social Security numbers and other personal information, which could be used to help file false tax returns. The sites also may carry malware, which can infect people's computers and allow criminals to access your files or track your keystrokes to gain information.

Email Phishing Scam: "Update your IRS e-file"

The IRS is aware of email phishing scams that appear to be from the IRS and include a link to a bogus web site intended to mirror the official IRS web site. These emails contain the direction “you are to update your IRS e-file immediately.” The emails mention USA.gov and IRSgov (without a dot between "IRS" and "gov"), though notably, not IRS.gov (with a dot). Don’t get scammed. These emails are not from the IRS. The IRS has also posted YouTube videos on tax scams and phishing-malware.

What do you do if you get these messages?

  • Do not respond to the email or click on the links.
  • Instead, they should forward the scam emails to the IRS at phishing@irs.gov.

For more information, visit the IRS's Report Phishing web page.

Please visit www.IRS.gov to educate yourself and your friends and family on other recent tax scams to watch out for.

Reporting Tax-Related Schemes, Scams, Identity Theft and Fraud

To report the various types of tax-related illegal activities, refer to the IRS chart explaining the types of activity and the appropriate forms or other methods to use.   

You may also report instances of IRS-related phishing attempts and fraud to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1-800-366-4484.

As you can see, such scam artists are very sophisticated and will stop at nothing to get your money. Remember, the IRS does not initiate contact with taxpayers by email to request personal or financial information.Don't fall victim to tax scams. Remember — if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. 

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich

   


 

                     

Weekly Update

January 9, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

36 Alarms 19 Car/deer   accidents
17 Assist   Citizen 16 Check   well beings
14 Domestic   disputes 18 Shoplifting   complaints
15 Larcenies 13 Motorist   assists
17 Operating   while impaired 6 Personal   injury crashes
33 Property   damage crashes 19 Suspicious   situations
24 Traffic   hazards 152 Traffic   stops
20 Traffic   violations 22 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 739 calls for service.

On 1/5/2017, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office deputies were notified by a citizen that they had received a call from a company calling themselves MRS, claiming to be a collection agency for Verizon Wireless. The company claimed the citizen had an outstanding balance of over $14,000 and asked them to verify their personal information. The company called the citizen by their maiden name and had a wrong address for the citizen. The citizen knew not to give out any personal information, did not send the company any money, and then contacted the Verizon Fraud Department and the Eaton County Sheriff’s Office. The citizen was advised to contact her financial institution to put red flags on her accounts in case they had other information.

Please be aware there are many companies and individuals out there who make it their mission in life to devise ways to take your hard earned money and your identity. With tax season upon us, now would be a good time to remind your elderly family members and children entering the workforce to beware of such scams. Remind them to never give their personal banking information, social security number, etc., over the phone.

If you are leaving for an extended length of time don’t forget to visit our webpage and click on the Vacation Check Request – or call our office at 517-543-3512.

Have you heard of the STOPPED program? STOPPED stands for Sheriffs’ Telling Our Parents & Promoting Educated Drivers.   The Michigan Sheriffs’ Association (MSA) and State Farm Insurance® offer this program free of charge statewide. It is a parental notification system which was developed for the state by the MSA. The goal of STOPPED is to reduce the number of young drivers who are involved in motor vehicle crashes each year.


Parents voluntarily register their vehicles with MSA online. They may register any vehicle - car, boat, ORV, moped, motorcycle - that will be operated by a driver under 21.


An identification decal is issued by MSA and affixed to the front windshield of the vehicle where it serves as a constant reminder to the teen to always drive as if his/her parents are in the car.


If, for any reason, the vehicle is pulled over by a participating law enforcement agency while a driver under 21 is driving, a notification is sent to the registered owner of the vehicle. Notification includes the time and location of the stop, the driver’s name and number of passengers in the vehicle, the reason for the stop and whether or not any citations were issued. A driver’s license is one of the most visible symbols of a child’s progression into adulthood. However, bad habits are difficult to change once set.

For more information about STOPPED, including frequently asked questions, and to register, please visit the MSA website at www.misheriff.org go to the Programs tab, and click on STOPPED. It takes only a few minutes to register and is a free parental tool available to use to show your young driver you care.

Monday, January 16, 2017, is when our nation observes Martin Luther King, Jr. His legacy as a leader in the Civil Rights Movement, a Baptist Minister, and Activist will live on in our hearts and history.  Please take a moment to reflect on the impact he has made and continues to make.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich


Weekly Update

January 4, 2017

Sheriff Tom Reich, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office

In the past week the Eaton County Deputies have responded to:

37 Alarms 22 Car/deer   accidents
18 Assist   Citizen 21 Check   well beings
16 Domestic   disputes 16 Shoplifting   complaints
13 Larcenies 10 Motorist   assists
25 Operating   while impaired 3 Personal   injury crashes
15 Property   damage crashes 21 Suspicious   situations
24 Traffic   hazards 190 Traffic   stops
18 Traffic   violations 19 Vacation   checks

Overall the Eaton County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to 721 calls for service.

On 12/28/2016 at 2017 hours, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office deputies were dispatched to Biggby Coffee on Elmwood Rd, in Lansing to the report of an Armed Robbery. The suspects were described as two black males who came in the side door of the building. When they approached the counter, one male handed the other male what appeared to be car keys, and he left the store. The male at the counter handed the clerk a plastic bag and told him to put the money in the bag, approximately $118. The male then left, possibly entering a vehicle and leaving northbound on Elmwood Rd. Through video surveillance from the store, a description was obtained of each suspect. About an hour later, Eaton County Sheriff’s Office Deputies were advised that Lansing Police Department officers were working another Armed Robbery on the east side of Lansing where two of the possible same suspects robbed a Subway store.

If you are leaving for an extended length of time don’t forget to visit our webpage and click on the Vacation Check Request – or call our office at 517-543-3512.

Safer Drivers, Safer Roads

As winter comes into full swing, road conditions can change as fast as the weather in Michigan. Practicing defensive driving can take on all connotations from watching for deer who choose the wrong time to run across the road, watching for drivers distracted by their cell phones and passengers in their car, to being alert to oncoming traffic, to driving on dry pavement one moment and suddenly discovering that what looked like a wet spot in the road while you were approaching it turned out to be a patch of ice.

Defensive driving courses are available online through the National Safety Council and offer specialized courses that focus on teen and young adult drivers, truck and van drivers, emergency vehicle operators, etc.

Motor vehicle collisions are the leading cause of death and injury in the workplace and the cost of a single accident could easily exceed $1.4 million. A defensive driver safety program can reduce risk and keep people safer on the road.

Let’s add safer driving to the list of resolutions you made for 2017. Together we share the road; let’s share it safely.

Yours in Public Safety

Sheriff Tom Reich

 

 

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Click to download the Autism Emergency Contact Form Click to download Request for Special Medical Attention Form

 


Either of these forms can be mailed to us at 1025 Independence Blvd, Charlotte, MI 48813, Faxed to 517-543-2922

or emailed to treich@eatoncounty.org and they will be put on file with Central Dispatch  

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