Sunday, May 19, 2013
Covering Dallas, Monmouth, Independence, Falls City and surrounding areas since 1868
August 28, 2012
DALLAS -- Two Polk County Sheriff's Office reserves have been promoted to solo status, giving them the same duties as regular full-time deputies.
Sheriff Bob Wolfe promoted Reserve Deputies David Mills and Casey Gibson on Aug. 14.
With the promotion of Mills and Gibson, Polk County now has three solo reserves, said Polk Deputy Bob Evarts.
"They are alone in a car just like a regular patrol deputy and can do everything a deputy can," Evarts said.
While solo reserves have the same job and uniform as full-time deputies, they mostly work for free.
They are required to work a minimum of 24 hours per month, at least 16 of them on patrol.
Evarts said they will work shifts as their schedule allows. He said as budget cuts take a toll on the number of deputies on the road, reserves offer needed coverage.
"It's very nice when they are available," Evarts said. "It's always a benefit to have one more deputy in a car.
"Overall, it cuts down on the amount of time it takes to respond to calls and increases the chance there will be cover close by on calls when backup is needed."
Reserves must go through extensive training before earning solo status, Evarts said. They must complete 340 hours of required training at the Mid Valley Reserve Training Academy. After that is hundreds of hours of field training with deputies, as well as the same mandated annual training required for deputies.
"These reserves have put in thousands of hours in training, marine patrol, security details and road patrol," Evarts said.
Evarts said the sheriff's office has 18 reserves now and several more applying to the reserve training academy in the fall.
He added that reserves typically undergo training while holding down a job at the same time, so it takes an extraordinary amount of dedication.
Gibson and Mills are no exception.
"These two reserves in particular are outstanding," Evarts said. "They are real go-getters and great resources for the office."