Janesville60.3°

Sheriff's office, communities create joint detective unit

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Mike DuPre'
September 11, 2008

Police Chief Jerry Schuetz thinks his small Milton Police Department now has a de facto detective bureau to augment its work.


That’s because the Rock County Sheriff’s Office and the police departments in Milton, Beloit Township, Clinton, Edgerton and Evansville have created a joint Special Investigations Unit.


Milton will provide officers as needed for special investigations, Schuetz said, and the unit will help his officers investigate crimes in their jurisdiction that “could range from a rash of burglaries or a rash of vandalisms to more serious crimes such as illegal drug distribution or gang activity.”


The Milton Police Department has 10 full-time sworn officers, including Schuetz, and eight part-timers.


“Rather than have one jurisdiction expend extensive overtime in a complex investigation, we will share resources of a more specialized nature and information on like crimes,” the chief said.


Those specialized resources include the sheriff’s office’s more seasoned detectives, Schuetz said.


In a news release announcing the new unit, Sheriff Bob Spoden said:


“Recent events demonstrate that criminal activity can occur in all areas of the county. … From dealing in narcotics to burglary, robbery and prostitution, this unit of specially trained deputy sheriffs and police officers can respond and concentrate on investigating these and other types of crimes.”


The Special Investigation Unit recently helped eradicate a large amount of marijuana and equipment to grow and process it found at a sophisticated and organized growing operation in Lima Township in the county’s northeast corner, the sheriff said.


The sheriff’s office will be the lead agency in the unit, Spoden said, but a board of directors composed of administrators from each participating agency will oversee it.


In addition, the Rock County Sheriff’s Office has entered a partnership with the Milwaukee High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area. The arrangement will enhance the new Special Investigation Unit with information technology and specialized training, Spoden said.



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