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April 2014 Field Release

A Word from the Sheriff:

I have heard many compliments from Commisioned and Corrections staff about the new radio system and am proud of the successful outcome of this project.  Many of you know that just a few short weeks after the radio cutover, an armed suspect barricaded himself with hostages inside an Oro Valley home after fleeing from deputies.  During this incident, it was necessary for our deputies to have radio contact with personnel from the Oro Valley Police Department, Pima Regional SWAT, Pima Regional Bomb Squad and the Golder Ranch Fire District in order to communicate for a successful outcome.  The members of all agencies were very happy with their ability to talk on one frequency and clearly hear each other.  I am pleased with the new system and grateful for the collaborative effort of all of our team in their skills to perform a safe rescue of the hostages. 

On another note, April is National Volunteer Month.  As such, the Pima County Sheriff’s Department has teamed up with Pima County Animal Care in sponsoring a Dog Walk and Cat Cuddle event on Sunday, April 27th from 9-11 a.m.  Please join me in this volunteer opportunity.  I hope to see many of you there!

News from Chief Deputy Nanos:

As the month of May approaches, we are reminded through the celebration of National Police Week of members of the law enforcement community who have given the ultimate sacrifice while performing their duties as guardians of people.  This year, the Pima County Regional Law Enforcement Memorial will be held at the Tucson Convention Center Grand Ballroom on Friday, May 2nd commencing at 0900 hours.  The keynote speaker will be the Honorable Sarah R. Simmons, presiding Judge of Pima County Superior Court.  I ask that you all attend to pay tribute to your fallen brothers from Southern Arizona Law Enforcement Agencies. 

As I think about all you do for our community in your daily jobs, I also have learned that many of you go above and beyond by volunteering.   I know many of you volunteer at your place of worship, for the Girl Scouts or Boy Scouts, as coaches for youth teams, and for other non-profit organizations.  Today, I am asking for one more piece of your volunteer schedule to offer your time at the Pima Animal Care on Sunday, April 27th.  As the Sheriff mentioned, Civilian, Correction and Comissioned staff will be there to help exercise and socialize some of the animals that are in true need of attention.  If you have an hour to come and help, please sign up with Sgt. Aimee Trueblood.  I am thankful for your support in a wonderful community partnership!

New Radio System:

By now, each of us has had an opportunity to talk on our new state-of-the-art radio.  This project, which began in 2004, has finally come to a fruition.  The new system has 22 antenna sites and we are able to transmit and receive in places where we couldn’t communicate by radio previously. You can now communicate with the Ajo district from Tucson and vice versa.

The Ajo District was first to cut over on March 15, while the rest of the Department cut over on March 16.  This was a major operation that required a tremendous amount of pre-planning.  It was such a success, we “didn’t lose any deputies” during the process! 

A few changes have been the utilization of the new radio designators and the new priority call or 10-35 tones.  We have never had a tone emitting from the radio during a priority call until now.

Feedback from deputies and corrections officers have been mostly positive.  Deputies can easily communicate which leads to a safer work environment for all of us.  It The radios are also lighter than previous versions.  The Sheriff’s Department has once again set the benchmark for the other agencies that will be commencing their own cutover soon.

New Dealer Plates:

On April 1, 2014, the Arizona Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Division began distribution of the new vehicle dealer license plates for all types. 

Dealer (DL), Motorcycle (MD), Trailer (TR), and the Manufacturer (MT), are the 4 different types you will start to see.

All previously issued dealer plates will become invalid.

The new plates will become valid for use on April 28, 2014 and are royal blue with white lettering.

Corrections Officer Honored:

On August 9, 2013, Corrections Officer Thomas Comeau risked his life by assiting DPS Officer Valenzuela pull a severly injured person from a fully engulfled vehicle fire on I-10.

The victime survived because of their immediate action and bravery, while putting their own lives in danger. For his heroic actions, he received the DPS Civilian Lifesaving Award.

New DDS Home:

Digital Dictation Services (DDS) has finsihed moving into their new home at the annex building. The newly renovated area used to be home to the former Border Crime Unit and the Search and Rescue offices. Now, each transcriptionist has their own work area with the supervisor offices nearby. They even have a new break room area which is shared with the records unit.

SAV Remembered:

Sheriff's Auxiliary Volunteer Norbert W. Gartner, Jr. died peacefully on April 2, 2014 in Tucson, Arizona. He was born September 20, 1933 in Hammond, Indiana. He is survived by his wife of 24 years, Sharon; his daughter, Lora Gartner; his brother Joseph Gartner. He  served in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Korean War and was awarded numerous medals. He assumed leadership of the Gartner Roofing Company in Hammond, Indiana until his retirement in 1995, when he moved to Tucson.  His retirement years were devoted to service to God and the Community.  He attended the local Citizen’s Police Academy and volunteered with the Tucson Police Department and Sheriff's Auxiliary Volunteers.  Norbert received the President’s Highest Civilian Award for Community Service in Volunteering and Marine General F.G. Payne wrote and thanked Norbert for his success in assisting our community and service to our Nation. A memorial service celebrating the life and work of Norbert Gartner will be held Saturday, April 19th at 1:30 p.m. at Mount Zion Lutheran Church 4520 West Ajo Way, Tucson, AZ. His final resting place will be in the St. John-St. Joseph Cemetery in Hammond, Indiana. In lieu of flowers, please send memorial donations in his name to Mount Zion Lutheran Church.


Military Leave:

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