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OPINION

From the Sheriff: October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Wayne County Sheriff Barry Virts

What is domestic violence? Domestic violence is one person’s use of a variety of tactics to control another person in an intimate relationship. 

Does your partner hit, punch, slap, kick, shove or bite you? Threaten to hurt you or your children? Abuse or threaten to harm pets? Have sudden outbursts of anger or rage? Become jealous without reason? Isolate you from family or friends? Prevent you from going where you want, when you want? Interfere with your job or going to school? Destroy personal property? Deny you access to bank accounts, credit cards or car? Control all finances? Force you to have sex or do things that make you uncomfortable? Insult you or call you names? Follow you or spy on you? Humiliate you in front of others? If you answered yes to one or more of the above, you might be abused. 

You are not alone. Call 911 for help and assistance. You can also contact the Victims Resource Center in Newark for help, assistance and advocacy at 315-331-1171. I will also be partnering with District Attorney Michael Calarco, Chairman Kenneth Miller and the Wayne County Board of Supervisors to bring awareness to domestic violence by presenting a proclamation at the Oct. 20 Board of Supervisors meeting.

The Sheriff’s Office, Public Safety and Courthouse buildings will be illuminated in purple light throughout October as Wayne County marks Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Purple is the symbolic color for domestic violence awareness and, historically, the battered women’s movement. Wear purple on Thursday, Oct. 22 to help generate discussion and awareness, and recognize the victims and survivors of domestic violence.

The Wayne County Sheriff’s Office and Wayne County government will be working to address Gov. Cuomo’s Executive Order No. 203 through community engagement, planning, listening and learning, and with public comments. I will be releasing each week — via the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page, Twitter accounts @SheriffVirts and @WayneCoSheriff, our website (waynecosheriff.org) and by press releases — information specific to the Sheriff’s Office Police Services operations to inform you on how the Sheriff’s Office functions.

Please continue to wash your hands, cough into your elbow, don’t touch your face, social distance staying 6 feet apart, stay home if you are sick and wear a mask when you cannot social distance!

On Oct. 24 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., all Wayne County law enforcement agencies will offer the opportunity to prevent drug abuse and theft of expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs from your homes. Bring your expired, unused and unwanted medications for disposal. The locations around the county will be disclosed at a later date. The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked. 

Law enforcement will be at all locations to receive and dispose of old and/or no longer used medication and prescription drugs. All the Wayne County law enforcement agencies will partner to provide this disposal service to reduce the abuse of prescription medication and prevent polluting our landfills and water supplies. If you have prescription drugs or medications that are no longer needed or used, please use this disposal service to rid your home of any unneeded medications.

In August 2020, 16 males and one female were committed to the jail facility. There were 33 transports, 3,141 inmate meals served, and $3,246.06 collected from six inmates released on bail and fines. Inmates worked 1,345 hours of labor in laundry, facility cleaning and food service.

The Jail Facility boarded one inmate from the Cayuga County Sheriff’s Office, and secured one parole violator and one inmate that were ready for transfer to state prison. 

Court security officers cleared 2,056 people entering the Hall of Justice through the magnetometer, securing 39 contraband items similar to Transportation Security Administration airport security — firearms, ammunition, knives, scissors, cell phones, glass bottles, umbrellas, helmets, hand tools, etc. 

Deputies traveled 133,108 miles on patrol, investigating 72 motor vehicle collisions in which 15 people were injured, 57 crash investigations, seven missing persons, 16 animal complaints, 1,620 miscellaneous complaints, 408 minor crimes, four major crimes, one fire investigation, and 687 other complaints. Deputies issued 365 traffic tickets, two DWIs and made 108 violation, misdemeanor and felony arrests, plus 23 mental health arrests.

The Civil Office processed 36 legal papers and 86 Family Court orders, received $116,483.90 and paid out $113,154.32 to creditors. This month, $8,278.18 was remitted to the County Treasurer’s Office for the general fund.

Wayne County law enforcement charged 22 people with DWI: one by the Clyde Police Department, one by Newark PD, one by Palmyra PD, two by the Sheriff’s Office and 17 by New York State Police. Please drink responsibly!

As of March 12, all schools, training and business travel has been suspended until the COVID-19 State of Emergency ends.

Correction Officer Christopher Kerr completed 10 years of service to the Sheriff’s Office. I salute Chris for his service.

Search Wayne County NY Sheriff to download the mobile app onto your smartphone or tablet. It is available free of charge from the iTunes and Google Play (Android) app stores. The new app will help Wayne County citizens stay tuned to important information from the Sheriff’s Office. After downloading the app onto your smartphone, you can receive alerts, news and resources.

If you see something, say something. Call 911 to report any suspicious activity. Social media is used to inform you of events and arrests that would be released to the media, but timelier to keep you informed. Social media sites are not used as an official communication tool. Concerns and inquiries should be directed to me by calling 315-946-5797, by emailing bvirts@co.wayne.ny.us or mailing Sheriff Barry Virts, 7376 state Route 31, Suite 1000, Lyons, NY, 14489. If you have a complaint that is an emergency or time sensitive, call 911 to have law enforcement respond immediately.

Visit us at our social media sites, Facebook page “Wayne County Sheriff’s Office,” Twitter accounts @SheriffVirts and @WayneCoSheriff and waynecosheriff.org. Load the free MobilePatrol App on your smartphone for a one stop resource for all WCSO information.

Please contact me at 315-946-5797 or at bvirts@co.wayne.ny.us with any questions or concerns you may have.

Barry Virts is Wayne County Sheriff