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The Briefing Room June 2014 a magazine of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office

Photo by Deputy John Lynch Active Killer Training March 2014

The mental, physical and tactical challenges of being a female deputy Also Inside: 

DCSO deputy named one of America’s “Top Cops”

How ignoring mental illness hurts us all

A man survives a suicide attempt off the Golden Gate Bridge

Also, Jelly Bean therapy. Really!

February 2014

THE BRIEFING ROOM The magazine of the Douglas County Sheriff's Office 4000 Justice Way Castle Rock, CO 80109 303.660.7500

Inside this issue: Message from Sheriff David A. Weaver


Behind the Badge with Undersheriff Tony Spurlock


America’s Top Cops


Survey says clear skies ahead in Douglas County


Justice Center Changes


A Jelly Bean for health


Cowboy Coaching


Suicide Survivor


Good times with Mel


Teenage Trouble COVER STORY Female Crime Fighters


Tower Power




Honor Guard on Ice


Take your child to work day


Parents Online


Same soars like an Eagle



COVER STORY: Female Crime Fighters READ Female Crime Fighters page 18

the force.

Still rare in most law enforcement agencies, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office is about to become flush with female enforcers. Almost half of Specialists (civilians) are female. After graduating from the police academy, they’ll join the ranks of other deputies who are women.

“Once they have their uniforms on, they’re no different than any male officer. They serve the community and put their lives at risk just the same.” –Undersheriff Tony Spurlock

That will put the DCSO high above the national average for females on

Did you know?

The longest serving and highest ranking woman in the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office is Holly Nicholson-Kluth, Chief of the Administrative Services Bureau. She joined the force in January 1989.

Things have changed since officers were all male. There’s new training and tactics for women in blue. Studies also show females bring different skills to law enforcement. DCSO’s first female cop

CSVs taking it to the Streets 38 Keep Calm and Lock up


Home Safety Tips




Active Shooter Training Freezing for a Reason

46 48

House Watch


Helping the mentally ill


Awards Ceremony


The Sawaya Award


Fitness Funds


Briefing Room, a magazine of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office


DAVID A. WEAVER, DOUGLAS COUNTY SHERIFF It’s hot out! Summer and Scams Scammers are out in full force right now, hoping that you’re on vacation or have let down your guard. The Douglas Sheriff’s Office website (click on the icon below) has a number of tips and fraud alerts all year long. But here are some tips to keep you safe during summer: 

Police impersonators might call and pretend to have a warrant out for your arrest. Don’t fall for it. Instead, call us and report the crime. Online or on the phone, people will pretend you’ve won a sweepstakes. Did you ever enter the contest? Most likely, it’s a scam. Don’t give out any personal information. Looking for a job? Taking a check and wiring half of the money back along with office supply products or other goods is a scam, not employment. Want to buy a pre-paid credit or debit card, otherwise known as a “green dot” card? Not over the phone. It’s a scam. Close those garage doors. Criminals are looking for an easy way to steal your bikes or other things from your home. Spot a scam? Contact us by clicking on these icons.

The Briefing Room, a magazine of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office

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Behind the Badge


ildfire, floods and tornados don’t have to take you by surprise. The Red Cross has developed a new phone app that uses GPS to warn you about pending natural disasters wherever you travel. You can download the app at Douglas County can also call you or text you emergency notifications if you’re registered with our state-of-the-art CodeRED system. You can enter your home phone, cell phone or email address so that you can be contacted even when you’re away from your house. All of your personal information will be kept confidential. Register free online at Just one year ago, the Black Forest fire exploded, destroying 509 homes. It was the most destructive fire in Colorado’s history. Fortunately, the 2014 fire season outlook is pretty positive, according to Predictive Services Fire Meteorologist Tim Mathewson. But don’t let your guard down. This is the perfect time to build an emergency kit, make an evacuation plan for your family and plant fire-resistant shrubs and trees. Also, regularly clean your roof and gutters and test the batteries in your smoke detectors. Please stay safe and sign up to be notified of emergencies. Thanks,

DCSO’s Undersheriff Tony Spurlock


2014 Honorable Mention ongratulations to our very own Deputy David Jorgensen for being named one of America's "Top Cops." The National Association of Police Organizations (NAPO) presented Jorgensen with an honorable mention at an awards ceremony in May.

The Douglas County Sheriff’s deputy and U.S. Marshals Judson Eastes and John Hess worked together to arrest several dangerous criminals last year alone. Among them, two men who posed as police officers to kidnap and murder a man...a fugitive who shot a woman to death...and a criminal who'd been on the run for more than a decade for murder. The NAPO says their excellent teamwork and investigative skills have made America a safer place to live, and says their hard work and dedication is an inspiration to everyone in law enforcement. Congratulations David! We are very proud of you!

Sunny Skies Ahead

Most residents think Douglas County is safe, fiscally responsible and headed in the right direction, according to a new survey. Ninety-nine percent of people feel “safe and secure” traveling around Douglas County. Ninety-percent of those polled say they’re very satisfied or satisfied with law enforcement by the sheriff’s office. Only 3-percent were dissatisfied with services. When it comes to public safety, 62% of residents think that DCSO’s highest priority should be reducing crime, followed by traffic control. The Hill Research Consultants survey was paid for by Douglas County. The firm conducted a telephone survey of 600 registered voters in the county from April 3 through April 7. A full 67-percent of resident feel that things in Douglas County are going in the right direction, while 20percent thinks the government is on the wrong track. According to Castle Rock News Press Reporter Mike DiFerdinando, Hill Research says Douglas County is bucking the trend nationwide. The company has seen dissatisfaction grow among people in other areas across the country about their local governments since 2007, but Douglas County has actually grown more support during that time. Twenty-six percent of people polled think the county needs to spend its time and money on economic prosperity, then natural resources such as water, closely followed by personal and public safety. Overall, the majority of people or 98-percent believe it’s a good place to raise a family, a safe place to live and work and is a friendly place. Read the actual survey here: documents/2014-citizen-survey-results.pdf

Written by Chief Holly Nicholson-Kluth, Administrative Services Bureau


he Justice Center expansion started in August of 2012 to address serious concerns about facilities for inmates with mental illness, inmates with medical issues, Americans with Disabilities Act requirements, overall site security as well as lack of secure parking for the sheriff’s staff, county assets and judicial staff. On November 8, 2013, the first phase was completed which was the parking garage that opened for employee and county vehicle parking as well as some courts and judicial staff. The completion of the parking garage now affords additional employee parking, along with secured parking spaces for law enforcement vehicles as well as security needs for some other Justice Center functions.

tion of approximately 50-60%. This part of the project is expected to cost approximately $25 million and is on time and budget, funded by the Justice Center sales tax which was approved by voters in 1995 and extended in 2008. During that time as well as the years following, management positions and special assignments in the sheriff’s office were cut to afford more line staff in the patrol function, extending the viability of the Law Enforcement Authority fund and avoid raising taxes for residents.

Again all of the funds used for this project were taxpayer approved funds which were earmarked for capital expansion. When the sales tax was extended which became effective in 2011, a portion of the extension became available for some increased The second phase, which includes the renovation staffing in limited areas such as detentions and comand expansion of the detention facility, is well under munications from which some staff has been added way with a completion date for late 2014. This exover the past two years. pansion phase is the reconfiguration and repurposing of existing housing areas to provide for ADA re- The Law Enforcement Authority (LEA) Fund is excluquirements, plumbing issues and other internal sively for patrol staff and equipment and is a mill space remodel needs, to enhance site security, and levy tax on property in unincorporated Douglas ingress and egress issues. County. Once completed DCSO will have the capability to house and treat more of the increasing special populations, minor medical issues and recovery on site, mental health populations, additional females and segregation of female special populations, as well as provide a secure perimeter, and safer and more efficient pre-booking and booking areas both for our staff and other police agencies bringing inmates to Douglas County.

No LEA Funds have been or are able to be used for this project. The majority of the rest of the sheriff’s office (such as Civil, Records, IT, Investigations and the majority of Detentions) is funded by the General Fund which is also deChief Holly rived from propNicholsonerty taxes in Kluth The dedicated funds used for these projects have Douglas County, Administrativ come from that sales tax paid for by, not only Doug- and which is Services las County residents, but an estimated 65% of non- shared by most of Bureau residents who shop in Douglas County. Ironically, Douglas County’s this percentage is not that far different from the de- other governtention center average non-resident inmate popula- ment functions.

y -


PSAC members Rick Murray, Linda Goodrich and Dave Allen (on the Detention subcommittee) tour the new facility construction site with Captains Robert McMahan and Attila Denes.

The Briefing Room, a magazine of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office


o you don’t think a Jelly Bean is good for you? This one is. She’s a 10-year-old English Settler and DCSO’s new pet therapy dog.

If it’s grief, the dog helps soothe and relieve some of the sadness for a few minuets. It’s also been proven that therapy dogs lower blood pressure and reduce anxiety. There’s a lot of stressed out people in the jail, and Reck says petting a dog can really help.

Jelly Bean’s handler is Heather Reck, a mental health clinician with Correctional Healthcare Companies.

“One of my goals here is to give inmates a chance to have a different texture, even for a

“This is one of the best therapy dogs I’ve ever had,” Reck says. “She’s intuitive, loyal to a fault, she’s very calm, she’s very friendly and loves people.” Jelly Bean comes to the detention facility once a week and attends mental health counseling sessions. Pet therapy is a wellrecognized adjunct to traditional mental healthcare, and is now finding its way into correctional mental healthcare. “She knows how to get love and knows how to do it beautifully. She walks right over to the person, sits down and says, “OK, I’m here to do my job, give you some attention and relieve your stress.’”

short period of time. They just melt when Jelly Bean comes to visit.”

Reck’s been training therapy dogs for 21 years. Together, they’ve gone into nursing homes, hospitals, veteran homes, chilIn Douglas County, approximately 50% of dren’s homes and homeless shelters. our inmates have a major mental illness. “There is such unconditional love. She sits Pet therapy animals can help resistant cli- there and loves them no matter what.” ents open up to their counselor, help ease Feel free to say hi to Jelly Bean if you clients’ fears, and offer a sense of attach- should see her in the halls of the Justice ment to an unconditionally-loving being Center! that many inmates lack in their day-to-day lives. “It works because it helps people connect to something outside of themselves. Quite often people are caught up in their own stuff and their own world and it’s hard to be focused outside of themselves, and if they can focus on something else, it’s good,” says Reck.

If someone’s kidnapped or lost in the mountains with a head injury, search and rescuers on foot, in the air and on horseback are ready to help them.

wilderness first aid, equine and canine first aid, Air Life Regional Mounted Searc Sixty mounted patrol units and 20 search and rescue teams from across Colorado participated training, Prairie Canyon Ranch O in Regional Mounted Search and Rescue Training GPS Trainin Prairie Canyon Open Space in Douglas County ing and search and rescue packhorse skills. They also on May 17 and 18. trained to apprehend a sex assault suspect in a “It was fantastic training,” Lt. Rob Rotherham, kidnapping, a lost person with a head injury and leader of the Douglas County Mounted Patrol practiced searching for evidence. Unit said. “It was invaluable. Mutual aid is important. Now when we respond to a critical inci- This is who took part in the exercise: Douglas County Sheriff’s Office Mounted Patrol, Douglas dent, we already have the same resources and County Search & Rescue, The Denver Sheriff training.” Posse, the Adams County Posse, Weld County Among other things, the mounted units practiced Posse, El Paso County Posse, Pueblo County

ch and Rescue Training Open Space May 17, 18 Posse, the city of Loveland Mounted Unit and AirLife. “It really helps us prepare to work together in case we have a multi-agency response to an incident,” Scott McEldowney, Douglas County Open Space Ranger, said. “It helps flush out issues like communications between the units. It brings us all together and makes us more cohesive.”

The event was sponsored by Douglas County Open Space and the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office. The BBQ was sponsored by the Douglas/Elbert County Horse Council.

He wanted to die, so he jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge. On the way down, he changed his mind. Somehow, Kevin Hines lived to tell about it. Today, he holds a Lifetime Achievement Award for his work in suicide prevention.

Reported by: Jacy Conradt, Marketing Manager ARMHN


meal,” and took the bus to the bridge, he interacted with many people who could rapahoe/Douglas Mental Health see his visible distress and yet no one Network hosted its thirteenth An- asked, “How can I help you?” or “What is nual Mental Health Benefit Luncheon on wrong?” questions he so desperately May 9, 2014 at the Inverness Hotel & Con- wished someone would ask him. ference Center, with a sold out crowd. This year’s keynote speaker was Kevin Hines, “If one, just one of those people I met in who, at the age of nineteen, survived a su- passing that morning, would have asked icide attempt jump off the Golden Gate me what was wrong, I would have told Bridge. them everything. I wanted so badly for someone to reach out to help me,” said Kevin captured the audience immediately. Kevin. At 5 foot 7 inches, he is not a big guy, but he has a big story. The entire morning be- Upon jumping, he told the audience, he fore he jumped from the bridge, as he immediately regretted his decision. It wasdropped college classes, ate his “last n’t that he wanted to die, but that he

Cracked‌Not Broken: Surviving and Thriving after a Suicide Attempt Author and Survivor Kevin Hines Silenced Audience at Annual Mental Health Luncheon needed to. The voices he heard in his speech to sign his book, Cracked‌Not head as a result of bipolar disorder with Broken: Surviving and Thriving After a Supsychotic features convinced him that he icide Attempt, for sponsors and guests. should die. He fell the 200-plus feet to the water in four seconds, and miraculously, survived. He was badly injured, but realized while he bobbed in the water waiting for help to come, that he was given a once in a life time opportunity to be a voice for suicide prevention. Kevin talked of his suicide attempt and mental illness with great emotion but his well-timed lightheartedness and hindsight commentary eased the tension in the room.

Kevin Hines with Joan DiMaria, CEO of the Arapahoe/ Douglas Mental Health Network, May 9, 2014 *Photo by photographer Britt Nemeth

About Arapahoe/Douglas Mental Health Network

In his message of suicide prevention, he challenged the audience to reach out to someone in crisis, or who appears to be in distress. He said, at the very least, give a stranger a smile. We may never know how much that smile means to them. In the end, many in the audience wiped away tears and everyone stood in a standing ovation. He stayed after his

Arapahoe/Douglas Mental Health Network is a private, nonprofit 501 (c)(3) corporation providing professional, comprehensive behavioral health care and addiction treatment primarily, but not exclusively, serving the communities of Arapahoe and Douglas Counties. We offer programs for adults, seniors, families, couples and children. These services include counseling, psychiatry, crisis services, case management, substance abuse treatment, victim services, an adult acute treatment unit, services to the criminal justice system, vocational and social rehabilitation, and school-based services. Arapahoe/Douglas Mental Health Network has an on-site pharmacy and also offers community education, wellness programs and a Speakers Bureau. Visit us at

It’s really “time” for him to go...

“This is an awesome clock!”

Mel, thanks for the good “time!”


meant the jail. ell, Mel, it’s been a lot of fun. Good times “I was never afraid even though there are some bad for seven years. After all, you’re the guy people in there. Someone always had my back,” said we called the “General.” Who else could get away Mel. with bossing around his captain and sergeant? In his retirement, Mel plans to spend more time with “I’m going to miss his sense of humor and the chance his wife Jan whom he’s been married to for 56 years. to give him a hard time, because he would always He might also travel a little to see family in Ohio. give it right back to us,” said Sgt. Brian Wunderlich with a smile. “Although, I could put him in his place.” Wherever the road takes you, Mel, we wish you well. Thanks for your dedication, service and great jokes. The DCSO recognized Mel Galbriesi for his seven “I’m honored to have worked here. If everyone could years of service with an engraved clock and a cake spend just one day with he people working for the when he retired in March. Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, they’d have a differThe 77-year-old Community Safety Volunteer ent perspective of life,” Mel said. worked in intake, not realizing at first that intake

The Briefing Room, a magazine of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office


Need more help for your daughter or son? chool work. Pimples. Trying to Consider the Juvenile Assessment Center be cool. Summer jobs. Friends. Parents. Dating. The list of teen- or JAC, which serves Arapahoe, Douglas, Elbert and Lincoln Counties. age problem is endless. But there’s help to get through those years. You can help empower your daughter, niece, granddaughter or friend in an overnight retreat just for girls in Douglas County. The Castle Pines Connection’s reporter Lisa Nicklanovich profiled the retreat in the article, Resources abound for navigating the tough teen years.

The JAC assesses at-risk youth, then refers them to programs they may need; drug treatment, counseling, mental health help and emergency services. The JAC serves kids ages 10-17. There’s no cost for the program.

The upswing in teen cyber bullying across the nation is just one example of how naviYou can contact them at 720.874.3381 or gating the teen years can be challenging check them out on the web at for both parents and teens. Many resources exist here in Douglas County thanks to Deputy Ann Walton of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office and Staci McCormack, student wellness coordinator of Douglas County schools.

Walton said, “The success we see with all these programs is amazing and we want to reach out and do more. I received a call from a parent of a girl who had attended one of our retreats who told me how her daughter had handled a tough situation because of her experience at the retreat. After the parent boot camps, parents say they can talk social media language and internet safety with their kids.” Read more here or go to http:// news/2013/qtr4/cpc2/bullying.html.

Female En Deputy Melissa Williamson Patrol


Deputy Christy Odum Patrol

Active Shooter Training March 26, 2014

Cover Story

“We will cover each other, male or female. I know these guys have my back and they know I have their back.� -- Detective Christine Brite, Investigations Division, DCSO


Research shows women officers rely on a style of p defusing and deescalating potentially violent confr problems with use of excessive force, according

ctive Christine Brite trains at the Highlands Ranch Law Enforcement Training Facility

policing that uses less physical force, are better at rontations and are less likely to become involved in g to the National Center for Women & Policing.


n March 1981, Lori Lilly made history at the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office (DCSO) by becoming its first Colorado POST certified deputy. She was hired by then Sheriff Steve Zotos and served a decade. Lilly wasn’t alone for long.

New Training Tactics Studies by the National Center for Women & Policing find female officers often possess better communication skills than their male counterparts and are better able to build trust and gain cooperation.

They’re also better at defusing and deescalating potentially violent confrontations and are less likely to use excessive force. Female officers say part of that is self-preservation. They’re smaller Today, there are 40 female deputies, about 14% than most men and avoid fights. of the force, slightly higher than the 12% national average cited by the U.S. Department of Justice. “I like my face the way it is. So, if I can sweet-talk A lot more are on the horizon. “I think women bring a high level of collaboration, negotiation and creativity to law enforcement.” --Chief Holly Nicholson-Kluth, Administrative Services Bureau Many deputies are hired after being specialists first in the Detention Division. Nearly half or 23 out of 52 specialists today are female. That means many more women will be pinning on badges in the DCSO soon. “Once they have their uniforms on, they’re no different than any male officer. They serve the community and put their lives at risk just the same,” Undersheriff Tony Spurlock said.

my way into getting them in the squad car, I will. Then, when it’s time not to be nice, we go there,” says Lt. Pam Starr of the Dallas Police Department, who recently taught a class at the DCSO called Female Enforcers. Starr created the special class after noticing women recruits had trouble with firearm and defensive tactics training that had been created for larger men years ago.

Her classes are designed to put female officers on par, making them just as fast and effective in Commanders continue to recruit more women in dangerous situations. all areas of the office. “In my 34 years, we’ve had a tremendous amount of expertise from women who’ve gone through the agency and been extremely successful,” said Undersheriff Tony Spurlock. “As a general rule, females bring a different perspective about service in the community and law enforcement. They have a great sense of calm about themselves in the chaotic field of law enforcement.”

“It may not be politically correct to say we’re different, but the biological fact is, we’re smaller statured, so we need to tailor the training. It’s a fallacy that one size fits all,” Starr says. “We grew up playing with dolls and getting along. So when you enter a high stress, high anger situation, women tend to use communication skills to diffuse that. We’re not afraid to fight. I just know I won’t win a fight against a 300-pound guy, so I will avoid it.”

Starr says she trains women to use verbal deescalation skills and more effective communication skills to gain control and compliance. Female deputies don’t actually avoid going hand-to-hand, but they say they are slower than their male counterparts to go there. “You use your intellect, negotiation skills and your influence to gain compliance. If you can’t do that, you may have to go to some of your weapons earlier with someone large,” Chief Nicholson-Kluth said. “If you know you can’t physically take down a large man, you may have to resort to your baton or Tazer before a male deputy does.”

Longest Serving

Chief Nicholson-Kluth is the longest serving woman in the office. She joined the force in January 1989 as a patrolwoman and rose through the ranks to Chief, just two steps from sheriff.

She’s a computer forensics expert, who directed the Colorado Regional Computer Forensics Lab from 2001-2004, worked for many years in crimes against children and adults, and has served in almost every division of the office. She’s always tried to be a mentor to other women.

car, her shoulder holster accentuating her belly, waddled over and asked if he needed help. His reply was quick and protective. “No, I’m fine.” While she never remembers feeling different from male deputies, they were a team, Holly always felt she had to make sure she was fit enough and competent enough to maintain the reputation that she could do the job. She almost never had an issue with a suspect failing to do what she asked. Although she always knew she may have to resort to one of her weapons more quickly than her male counterparts, she felt her negotiation and communication skills helped her avoid that type of situation. However, she always wondered back then if the other officers had questions. “Is she strong enough, is she authoritative enough, can she handle herself physically?”

Back in the day, Holly had to wear a man’s uniform because they didn’t make female blues. Bullet proof vests were made for flat chests, and gun belts and holsters were designed to sit on the hips, not on the waist, making everything a bit uncomfortable.

C f y w a h h i

“ s b

In the late 80’s, Holly was the only woman out on patrol. Then she became an investigator. During two pregnancies, she continued to work, conducted interviews and made arrests, up until the day before she gave birth. She remembers being nine months pregnant and answering a call for backup from her thenundersheriff. Holly climbed out of her undercover


Chief Holly Nicholson-Kluth Administrative Services Bureau

C t c t c a o

Bold and Brite

Christine Brite didn’t think about being one of the few women in law enforcement when she was 18 years old; she just knew she wanted to do police work. But over the years working in Detention, Patrol and Investigations, she realized others take notice of her gender. On some calls, people will only talk to her male partner. On other calls, men insist on talking to her, hoping she’ll be more understanding.

daughter’s 14-yearold friend. During those investigations, Christine says she used her communication skills to talk things out.

“We communicate more while the male deputies seem to act more quickly than we “Sometimes the public still sees us as dainty, softdo. It doesn’t mean spoken women without a lot of authority and that can we’re weak and we be dangerous for us,” Detective Brite said. can’t get the job done, because we can. It Christine became a detective in 2007 and works in just means we’re difthe Internet Crimes Against Children unit and Speferent. And that’s OK. cial Victims Unit. She’s one of several female Detec- We get from point A tives at DCSO. Some of Christine’s biggest cases into point B in a differclude arresting and convicting pedophiles, including ent way.” a pastor in 2010 who victimized 10 children and the owner of a dealership who repeatedly molested his

Detective Christine Brite Investigations Division

Deputy Maryam Rafai Detention Deputy

Deputy Maryam Rafai’s softer side made her want to be in law enforcement. She joined the DCSO as a specialist in the jail in 2006 and became a deputy in 2009. “I wanted to find something that would give me the authority to help women and children in need. I know what domestic violence can be and that a lot of people struggle with it,” Rafai says. “In Detention, I feel like we help people every day while they’re incarcerated, going to court and getting their situations resolved.”

ments. “Nowadays we’re more accepted among the guys. It’s awesome to be in a male dominated field that doesn’t’ feel like a male dominated field. The guys take you in as one their own. We’re all like brothers and sisters,” Deputy Yacuta said. Deputy Tiffany Yacuta Detention Division

Tiffany, who became a deputy last year, joined the nearly allmale Rafai says the DCSO makes women feel necessary Wildland Fire Hand Crew and needed. that fights its way into fires pulling hoses and That’s allowed women like Deputy Tiffany Yacuta wielding axes to douse the flames. For the job, the to take on previously all-male specialty assigndeputy had to become a certified firefighter.

husband worked nights, “not an easy road, but well worth it.”

Deputy Myra Buys Patrol Division

“Who gets the chance in a lifetime to be on both sides of serving the community?” said Tiffany.

“I think it’s cool that I’m a firefighter and a police officer at the same time. I’m like an all-around su- Detective Brite would like perhero!” to climb the ladder, but instead chooses to take care of her two daughPromotions and Priorities ters. While there are lots of opportunities for female enforcers, it’s no cakewalk. To get promoted to sergeant, you have to be willing to work anywhere “Sure, that’s going to limit me a lot. I think a lot of women are deterred by being promoted because and any shift. That could mean the graveyards and weekends. Many women purposely forgo pro- of their schedule. That’s a drawback. We put our motions to hold onto their regular work schedules family first.” for their families. While there’s no research that cites women are more family-oriented, there are fewer numbers of “I think many women don’t test for promotions women with brass, partly, they say, because they because of child-rearing duties or because they put their families first. Cultural expectations and choose to put their families before careers. It’s a their own desires still cause many women to want self-imposed limitation, but one that pays off with a happy home life. Even though they face tough to be at home to take care of their kids during evening and night hours,” Chief Nicholson-Kluth choices about career moves, female law enforcement officers say they love their jobs and think says. more women should be in law enforcement. The chief worked around her family issues after “I would encourage any women who feel this is a marrying another law enforcement officer who understood the work had to come first sometimes, career they would enjoy and would be good at to apply. I don’t think there’s anything stopping, with middle of the night call-outs and difficult schedules as he could bid shifts opposite of hers. hindering or preventing women from becoming She also relied on teenagers in their neighborhood excellent police officers and from being promoted to be “on-call” in case she got called out when her to any position they want,” Holly says.

Deputies Ann Walton (top left) Christine Bright (top right) and Karissa Russell (lower left)

America’s first female cop The first US-born female police officer in America was Alice Stebbins Wells. She was hired in 1910 by the Los Angeles Police Department. In 1914, they made a film about her called The Policewoman. She fought to get more women on the force and by 1916, policewomen in 16 other cities were hired, according to the LAPD. Wells was also instrumental in organizing the International Policewomen’s Association in 1915.

Colorado’s first female cop The first women to enter the police force in Colorado were Patricia O’Rourke, Linda Dodd and Judith Tolbert who were hired by the Colorado State Patrol in 1979. O’Rourke then became the first female sergeant in 1984 and retired in 1989, according to the CO State Patrol.

Douglas County’s first female deputy On December 16, 1983, Douglas County Clerk and Recorder Reta A. Crain officially congratulated Officer Lori Lilly as the first certified female peace officer to serve Douglas County. Crain wrote, “I’m sure you will be an asset to the law enforcement department.” Lilly retired in 1993.

DCSO’s Longest Serving female deputy Holly Nicholson-Kluth, Administrative Services Bureau Chief  After serving as Patrol deputy, corporal, investigator, sergeant, lieutenant and captain, she’s served almost nine years in the role of chief, first in the Law Enforcement Bureau for five years and the past four in the Administrative Services Bureau.  Mentors other women on the force  In 2002, Chief Nicholson-Kluth was the director of the only local and state-run multijurisdictional computer forensic lab in the country. She developed the high-tech crime unit after people began using technology for fraud and child solicitation. She created and directed the Colorado Regional Computer Forensics Laboratory which ran for three years until the FBI funded a local lab and integrated the multi-jurisdictional task force into their program, which is now the Rocky Mountain Regional Computer Forensics Laboratory based in Centennial.  Holds an A+ Computer Certification

Deputy Susan Collins Detention Division

Deputy Amanda Weiss Patrol Division

About the other women in the cover story: Detective Christine Brite, Special Victims Unit and Internet Crimes Against Children 

 

Christine became a detective in 2007 and works in the Internet Crimes Against Children unit and Special Victims Unit. Some of her biggest cases include arresting and convicting pedophiles, including a pastor in 2010 who victimized 10 children and the owner of a dealership who repeatedly molested his daughter’s 14-year-old friend. Served the DCSO since 2002. Began her career in 1999 in Arapahoe County. Mom of two daughters.

Deputy Tiffany Yacuta    

started with the DCSO as a specialist in 2008, then earned her badge in 2013. Growing up as a “military brat,” Tiffany says she always wanted to be in the military or in law enforcement. She loves her job as deputy and is a member of the DCSO’s Wildland Fire Hand Crew. After work, she goes to college to take classes and one day earn her Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice.

Westcreek Tower

The DCSO builds to improve public safety


he Douglas County Sheriff’s Office is in the process of building three new tower sites, installing new equipment on existing tower sites and leasing two other tower sites to improve coverage of the public safety radio systems across the county.

The need for additional coverage grew as the population increased over the last 20 years and people moved into previously unpopulated areas. They were last updated in 1997. “This will ensure first responders have adequate coverage during their everyday responses and during large-scale incidents,” Captain McMahan said.

Captain Robert McMahan

“This means that first responders will be able to communicate faster and more clearly dur- The changes are being funded by the Justice ing emergencies,” Captain Robert McMahan Center sales tax and the Douglas County of the Support Services Division says. Emergency Telephone Service Authority, otherwise known as the 9-1-1 Board. “The new system also addresses system capacity in large-scale emergencies such as The project team includes people from the school shootings and wildfires.” DCSO, Douglas County Facilities, the county attorney’s office and planning. In past emergencies, law enforcement and medical personnel had trouble talking to “This project team has been an awesome each other on their radios because of the group to work with and the collaborative lack of frequency capacity in the system. effort is amazing,” Capt. McMahan The new tower sites will improve their ability said. to communicate everywhere in Douglas County. The project began last fall and is exThe tower sites will be combined, forming pected to be comtwo “simulcast cells,” one in the north end of pleted by early the county and one in the south. 2015.



lease welcome Freia (pronounced Fray-a), the newest dog to join the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office K-9 unit. Freia is a 2 ½ year-old, 65-pound Belgian Malinois from Holland. She’s trained for narcotics detection and patrol. Her handler and partner is Deputy Greg Wilson. Freia speaks Dutch, so Deputy Wilson is learning “dog Dutch” so they can communicate!! Freia is named after Freya, the Norse Goddess of love, beauty, fertility, war, wealth, divination and magic. We think Freia will be magical as a protector of our deputies! Deputy Wilson asks that if you get to meet Freia, remember she's a working dog. She lives up to her warrior name sake. She is social, but please ask before approaching her for safety reasons. Our gratitude to The Friends of Douglas County K-9 Foundation, which purchased Freia for us. Also, Congratulations to Deputy Paul Montville who graduated the Vohne Liche Kennels nine-week Trainer Academy on May 9th, and is now certified as a Patrol and Detector Instructor.!

K-9 Freia and Handler Deputy Grey Wilson team up to catch criminals and protect Douglas County residents.

ON THE ICE - DCSO’s Honor Guard


he DCSO's Honor Guard presented the Colors for the Colorado Avalanche Hockey game on April 6, 2014 while the Star Spangled Banner was sung to the crowd.

The Color Guard includes Detective Christine Brite, Deputy Ian Hutcheon, Deputy Daniel Potter, Deputy Brad Burek, Deputy Elzi Dawn and Deputy Chad Mason. To watch the video, click here:

Take your child to work day at the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office. Sheriff David A. Weaver and Undersheriff Tony Spurlock talked to kids about the importance of public safety while dispatchers, Mounted Patrol, K-9, Hazmat and SWAT offered some hands-on-experience.

are you puttingyour children at risk with your onlineGuard posts? ONParents, THE ICE DCSO’s Honor

A message from Douglas County Sheriff’s Office Youth Education & Safety In Schools (Y.E.S.S.) Phyllis Harvey, Program Coordinator


e are all concerned about keeping our kids safe online. We teach them to not post personal information, not to “friend” anyone they don’t know, and not to post pictures of themselves. All in an effort to help keep them safe, right? Then what do we do as adults? We post stuff about our kids and families all the time without even giving it a second thought. Let’s face it, as parents we are so proud of our kids and want to tell our family, friends anyone who will hear us, all about them and their successes. So we post it all online… Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc… so the rest of the family and friends know about it. The bad guys know we do this! So now the predators that we warn our kids to stay safe from find our sites specifically looking for information about our kids and wham, there it is. Most of us are also Facebook “friends” with our kids so predators can get to their pages or sites as well. So what to do? Don’t post your kid’s names, or any identifying information about them, to include photos online. If you want to talk about your kids, as you should, say things like my son or my daughter, or just call them by their initials. Don’t use pet names because if the predator hears the name somewhere, they know which family it is or might be. The people who know you and your kids will know who you are talking about and you can still be the proud parent sharing all the great stuff. Our Internet Crimes Against Children, ICAC, detective Shawn Cronce wants us to know that we should also be careful as adults about what we post about ourselves so that we not only keep our kids safe, but ourselves as well. Single parents are more susceptible to being targeted by predators. The detective recommends you don’t post that you’re a single parent or list your status as single. Detective Cronce also says it’s critical to turn off the location services on Facebook and photos. Anyone who understands this technology can very easily find you and your kids if you don’t turn it off. She recommends that we do not post pictures of your family/ kids at events, whether at school, other activities, individual homes, etc… so predators won’t know where to find you. Keep those photos off line. Don’t forget to protect yourself as well. Be careful what information you post about yourself so that predators can’t target you. They watch our spending habits, where we go, who we hang out with so they can target us too. The take away - what you teach your kids about staying safe applies to us too in order to keep our families and ourselves safe! To find out more information on staying safe, visit our website or contact us.


-year-old Sam Martin was promoted to Eagle Scout during a special ceremony at the Highlands Ranch Law Enforcement Training Facility (HRLETF) on March 2, 2014. Sam’s Eagle Scout project was the compilation of many historical photos and artifacts from 64 agencies that use the HRLETF. Many of those photos and artifacts were from the DCSO’s own in-house historical collection, managed by historian Captain Attila Denes. Sheriff David A. Weaver, Captain Denes and Undersheriff Tony Spurlock attended the ceremony along with Sam’s family, friends and community members. Thanks for the incredible presentation, Sam! Congratulations, Eagle Scout!


ineteen people held up their right hands on May 8, and swore to Sheriff David A. Weaver to uphold the law and protect their families and neighbors. With that, they became the 9th class of Community Safety Volunteers (CSV) to graduate from the CSV Academy.

Taking it

Residents take oath to h

“This new class is special,” said Walt Wohlgemuth, the captain of the CSV program. “We have two of the youngest volunteers in the history of the program, both 19-year-old young men. Also, classmates seemed to bond together more than other academy classes.” One of the volunteers is a former criminal investigator for the IRS, two are the wives of current CSVs and one is retired firefighter. Nine volunteers are from Douglas County, nine are from Elbert County and one is from Castle Rock. The 10-week academy was held at the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office (DCSO) and the Highlands Ranch Law Enforcement Training Facility. The new graduates are required to volunteer 16 hours a month, but the average CSV gives 45 hours of their time per month.

for applicants for 2015.

The new graduates bring the total number of CSVs to 51. Half of the volunteers will work throughout the DCSO in records, Detention, Support Ser- “We are looking vices and other areas. The other half will work in Patrol, helping direct traf- passion for law e fic, taking some misdemeanor reports and conducting house watches, through the ong among other things. Interested? Go t During the graduation ceremony, some longer-serving CSVs were promot- ed. A CSV pinned captain bars on Wohlgemuth’s shirt collar. Now that the 2014 class has graduated, Wohlgemuth will start searching

t to the streets

help protect Douglas County

r next year’s CSV Academy, which will be held March 3,

for people who want to serve their community and have a enforcement because it takes a lot of dedication to go going training,� said Wohlgemuth.

to the DCSO website to learn more: http:// et/patrol/community-safety-volunteers/

Douglas County Sheriff’s Office recommends online system to help residents keep track of valuables Douglas County- Sheriff David A. Weaver encourages all residents to use a free online system that will help keep track of valuable --- and invaluable --- personal property. ReportIt is a free, secure online service allowing citizens to record serial numbers and upload images for phones, electronics, and other valuables. Should those items ever be stolen, having the information will go a long way in accurately and quickly identifying your property. Citizens can access the site at Undersheriff Tony Spurlock says “this is another tool for our agency that will help solve more crime. We encourage our citizens to track their personal property using this free online system.” The ReportIt service is a part of LeadsOnline, the online system that works with police across the country to track and recover stolen property. The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office uses LeadsOnline to help track and recover stolen property ---- everything from jewelry to sporting equipment to electronics, computers, cameras, and other items such as designer clothing, collectibles, and other items with invaluable personal worth. The system allows detectives to search for the items using a variety of parameters, including item descriptions and serial numbers. When an item is sold to a pawn or secondhand shop, the product information is entered in the LeadsOnline database and is immediately viewable by participating law enforcement agencies across the country. The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office has been using LeadsOnline for the past two years and has reported many successes using the online investigations system. Using LeadsOnline, The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office have recovered thousands of dollars in stolen property for Douglas County and surrounding residents. Recently, the LeadsOnline system helped detectives recover $57,000 worth of stolen jewelry. Other recovered items have included valuable jewelry, cameras, iPods, tools, computers and GPS units. With information provided by LeadsOnline, law enforcement can track down thieves, develop leads in numerous cases and make arrests. Citizens can store an unlimited number of serial numbers, item descriptions, pictures, and scans of receipts so items may be more easily identified in the event of theft. This record may also come in handy when filing claims with insurance providers in the event of loss. Citizens wanting to participate in Report It can register for the free service at and begin building their personal property inventory list. For more information on this program, please call Community Resources at 303-660-7544.

2014 Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics

Home Safety Tips from the 18th Ju

George H. Brauchler, District Attorney â–Ş Arapahoe, Do

Home invasions are often crimes of opportunity. To reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim, the following warmer months of the year.

Exterior doors: Keep doors locked at night and consider putting in wid in a way that will prevent them from shattering. Keep the door leading f as all external doors with a keyed door lock and sturdy deadbolt lock. Ga

Windows and sliding doors: Check to see that windows have a work they are opened a few inches for ventilation. The safest sliding door is o ed off the track. These doors should also have a strong, working key loc

Outdoor security: Shrubs around the home, if not kept trimmed back, provide the yard, garage and home can be minimized by having proper illumination, suc no outdoor lighting after dark are especially vulnerable to being targeted by cro

For apartment or multi-housing unit dwellers: Let management know wh sufficient around walkways, parking lots, mailboxes, stairways, elevators laundr

Working safely at home: Mark expensive office equipment with identification numbers and keep an upda ments in a secure or separate location such as a bank safe deposit box. When meeting a client for the first t anyone making an office delivery enter the home.

DA – 18th Consumer Protection Line: 720-874-8547

udicial District Attorney’s Office

ouglas, Elbert & Lincoln Counties

g are practical home security tips to consider, especially during the

de-angle peep holes at a height everyone in the household can use. Reinforce entryways with glass panels from the attached garage into the house locked when not at home. Consider equipping this door, as well arage doors should be closed at all times, even when there is someone at home.

king key lock, or are securely pinned. Keep windows locked, even when one with a dowel or a pin to prevent it from being shoved aside or liftck.

e excellent hiding places for a would-be burglar. Dark places around ch as flood lights and motion-sensitive lighting systems. Homes with ooks.

hen you will be out of town, and notify them when lighting is out or is not ry rooms, storage areas, etc.

ated inventory list. Consider storing this, in addition to backups of docutime, arrange to meet in a public place such as a coffee shop. Do not let

Deputy Kirk Kimball Served the DCSO 28 years

Deputy Ruben Garcia Served the DCSO 18 years

Deputy Joe O’Neill Served the DCSO 26 years

Deputy Wes Clements Served the DCSO 18 years

Detective Jeff Served the DCS



Thank Deputy Fred Mahne Served DCSO 26 years

Deputy Morton Heathman Served the DCSO 12 years

ffrie Arnold SO 11 years

Welcome to Retirementville Population 7

Poem by Detectives Shawn Cronce and Angela Spezzano

No more guns, no more gangs, no more

cking unsafe lanes! No more death, no more stress, no more cases in excess!

n amazing Douglas County Sheriff’s Deputies are headed on their next big adventure.

k you for risking your lives every day to make ours safer.

Good times ahead

Active Shooter t

Law an

Sp an hel


w enforcement train to respond to n active shooter at Chaparral High School on March 26, 2014.

pecial thanks to the student actors nd partner police and medics who lped make the training successful!



Freezing for a Reason! A team of numb folks at the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office jumped into frigid water in early spring to raise money for the Special Olympics. The 2014 Polar Plunge was held at the Aurora Reservoir on March 8. The water was 35-degrees cold. It was a great opportunity for law enforcement to give back. For athletes and officers alike, Special Olympics is a story of success, love, respect and commitment. This was the first year the DCSO took part in the Polar Plunge. Thanks to our “plungers” who took one for the DCSO team and raised money to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. The games give them a chance to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendships with their families, other Special Olympic athletes and the community.

Crime Trend Alert: Bicycle Thefts Bicycle thefts have increased in recent weeks. Apartment complexes, townhome areas, and other high occupancy dwelling areas are being targeted by thieves. The most recent cases involve locks being cut from secured bikes and the bikes are being stolen. Recommendations to Protect your Bicycle: If you don’t have to leave your bike outside (on the porch or on a bike rack), bring it in the garage or the home and keep the doors locked Use a high quality theft resistant lock if you have to leave the bike outside If you leave the bike outside leave outside lights on during hours of darkness If your garage door opener is stolen, change the code on the opener so the stolen one can’t be used to open the garage Be cautious and careful. Don’t become a crime victim! If you have any information about these cases, please contact the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office Tip Line at 303-784-7800.


hanks to the Castle Pines sixth grader who wrote us this nice letter after using our House Watch Program. What's House Watch? DCSO deputies or our Community Safety Volunteers will drive by your home to make sure that everything is safe and sound while you're on vacation or military leave (max 30 days.) It's free! Just go to our website ( and click on House Watch Program. Or click here:https://

A program used by the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office and Castle Rock Polic


n Castle Rock, a times in just a co ten people police come into 74% of all police calls, men

American Academy of Psych

get little training to deal wit

In 2002, police here began teaches deputies how to re problem solving techniques than half of all law enforcem Attila Denes of the Douglas

The goals of the training ar ly and to develop cooperati advocacy groups. Another g the country, sheriffs say the

On March 26, Castle Rock P gave a presentation about C versity of Colorado’s Anschu

About 40 participants learn en a preview of a long-term McLean Hospital.

A peer-reviewed journal art

Journal of the American Aca

Rock man who has had 45 monial to the great work th

ce prevents encounters with the mentally ill from spinning out of control

troubled and unstable young man dealt with police 45 ouple of years. That’s not unusual. As many as one out of o contact with have some kind of mental illness. Also, in ntal illness is a factor, according to the Journal of the hiatry and the Law. Yet, most police across the country th them. That’s not the case in Colorado.

learning about CIT or Crisis Intervention Training, which ecognize mental illness, deescalate the situation and use s and offer specific community resources. Today, more ment in Colorado are CIT certified, according to Captain s County Sheriff’s Office.

re to minimize use of force, intervene early and proactiveive relationships with police, mental health workers and goal is to keep people with mentally ill out of jail. Across ey’re prisons are quickly becoming mental health wards.

Police Officer Seth Morrissey and DCSO’s Captain Denes CIT in Colorado to medical students and staff at the Uniutz Medical Campus.

IN THE NEWS DCSO’s Captain Attila Denes has been interviewed on local and national news recently about how CIT training can save lives. On Colorado State of Mind, PBS I-News adds up the personal and financial costs --more than 55 billion a year in Colorado--of filling emergency rooms and our prisons with the mentally ill. Watch here. video/2365248309/

ned about CIT’s emerging role in the criminal justice/mental health interface, and were givm CIT outcomes study on which DCSO is collaborating with Harvard Medical School’s

ticle detailing the results of the study is currently being prepared for publication in the ademy of Psychiatry and the Law. Officer Morrissey presented a case study of a Castle CIT contacts in the past couple of years. The young man’s father gave an emotional testihat CIT officers are doing in Douglas County.

2014 Fraud Prevention & Safety Summit Held by the 18th Judicial District Attorney’s Office More than 200 people attended the 2014 Fraud Prevention and Safety Summit in Parker. The free, oneday event in May armed attendees with the knowledge and tools to fight back against identity theft and scammers.

DCSO’s Tom Cornelius and Deputy Scott Sickafoose of Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office give safety advice

If you missed the summit, here are some tips:  You haven’t won the Nigerian/Canadian Lottery just hang up!  A police officer will never ask you to wire money just hang up!  Your bank, the IRS and credit card company won’t ever call you needing your personal information, they already have it - so just hang up!

Seniors learn how to spot shucksters and scammers at the 2014 Fraud and Prevention Summit held by the 18th Judicial District Attorney’s Office

They saved lives, raised money to help kids

Sheriff David A. Weaver recognized residents and deputies at a 

AWARDED TO Sergeant Jeff Engel & Deputy Aaron Coleman AWARDED TO Pau-

lette Joswick and Sergeant Jeff Engel 

AWARDED TO: Deputy Brian Benns 

AWARDED TO Friends of Douglas County K-9 Board of Directors and Volunteers ALSO Denver Media Helicopter Pilot Matt Fess, Photographer Cody Crouch, KOA Reporter John Morrissey 

AWARDED TO: Heather Hocrath ALSO Lt. Dan McMillan, Sergeant Chuck Buckner, Deputy Anthony Arutunov, Deputy Todd Tucker, Deputy John Glassburner, Deputy Shaun Bell, Deputy Larry Arguello, Deputy Adam Moorman, Deputy Marcella Kelly, Deputy Kevan Carlson, Deputy Ed Roberson and Call taker Catherine Graves

or went above and beyond the line of duty

an awards ceremony May 12 at Cherry Hills Community Church

Some awards stemmed from heroic activity from residents and law enforcement during a car-jacking March 2014

Student Scholarships

from DCSO

The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office has granted student scholarships to teens who helped make their schools and/or neighborhoods safe through community service projects, school related projects or in their family life. The awards were presented to the students during a recognition ceremony in May. The scholarships were made possible by the generosity of Sanctuary and Gail and Dave Liniger. Since 1998, the Liniger’s have helped us raise more than $560,000 from golf tournaments at their golf course. In May, the DCSO awarded: 

Seven students $500 scholarships

A Race-A-Cop scholarship for $500 to one student

The DCSO”s Youth Education and Safety in Schools program gave a $1,000 to a student

The Ron King Scholarship was awarded to one student for $500

Sanctuary Our special thanks to Gail and Dave Liniger

Joanne Witowski & Shelley Browning Victim Assistance volunteers

The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office recognized two long-time volunteers with a 10year award on May 12, 2014. Joanne Witowski and Shelley Browning have both dedicated themselves to assisting victims of crime for a decade. Both women are volunteers in the Victim Assistance Program and have responded to calls on nights and weekends to provide information, advocacy, and comfort to many people in our county that have been affected by crime and tragedy. This unique volunteer opportunity requires dedication and commitment, as well as care and compassion. DCSO congratulates Joanne and Shelley for their service excellence to the citizens of Douglas County.

If you would like to learn more about the program, please call 303-660-7561 to speak to a Victim Assistance staff member.

Briefing Room, June 2014  

*Female Crime Fighters - The mental, physical and tactical challenges of being a female enforcer *DCSO deputy named one of America’s “Top Co...

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