16th annual National Police Canine Association

The Teton County Sheriff’s Office is hosting the 16th annual National Police Canine Association seminar and certification here in Jackson Hole this week.   We have a record attendance this year of 55 K9 teams.  The participating teams are federal, state, county, and municipal agencies from Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Utah, and Wyoming.   The K-9 teams are training in tracking, criminal apprehension, explosives detection, and drug detection.DSC003162

Local Immigration Information FAQs

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Local Immigration Information FAQs
As of April 2017

 

Does the Teton County Sheriff’s Office (TCSO) enforce federal immigration laws?

Answer: No, the TCSO only enforces Wyoming State Statutes and occasionally Town of Jackson Municipal Codes.

 

If I am living in Teton County and I am undocumented, how can I best avoid being deported?

Answer: The simple answer is to avoid committing criminal offenses that would ultimately lead Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents to investigate you. ICE has communicated to local law enforcement that they have no intentions of seeking out undocumented workers who are living a life free of criminal activity if they have not been deported before. Bottom line, stay out of trouble and obey the law and your odds of having an immigration officer contact you are minimal.

 

Does the TCSO communicate with the Federal Immigration-Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE)?

Answer: Yes, the TCSO has a good working relationship with ICE, who has promised to keep the TCSO informed of their operations when they are working in Teton County.

 

When does the TCSO call ICE related to immigration matters?

Answer: Generally the TCSO Detention Center will telephone ICE when local law enforcement has arrested and booked a person for violating a state statue and the person  is foreign born.

Additionally, if  ICE agents can be of assistance to TCSO investigators in locating a person that is suspected of committing a crime against the State of Wyoming and has fled the jurisdiction of Teton County, then we may seek the assistance of ICE in locating the person.  Often ICE has investigative resources that can be of assistance to our investigators.

 

Who are the ICE agents that work in the Teton County area?

Answer: The Wyoming state field office is located at 150 East B Street Rm 1014 Casper Wyoming 82601 and has only a small number of federal agents who work out of that office. They are supervised by the Denver Regional ICE office located at 12484 East Weaver Place Centennial Colorado  80111. The Casper ICE agents are responsible for investigations involving immigration violations in Wyoming and southern Montana.

 

How often does ICE come to Teton County?

Answer: ICE agents do not come to Teton County on a set schedule, but rather come to Jackson as often as they need to in relation to the investigations they are conducting. The most common visit from ICE to Jackson is to do a routine transfer of an inmate in the Teton County Jail to the custody of ICE.

The second most common visit of ICE to Jackson is when they are here to arrest a handful of “targeted individuals” .  These people typically have a warrant for their arrest. These operations are generally 1-3 days in duration and occur historically three to four times a year.

 

How does ICE decide who they will come and pick up (arrest) from the jail to start deportation proceedings?

Answer: ICE has communicated to local law enforcement that their primary focus is on undocumented individuals who commit crimes that are considered a safety concern for the community. These crimes are typically all felony crimes but can include driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.  Additionally,  they generally will start deportation proceedings on people who have previously been deported and have returned to the United States.

 

Does ICE deport people arrested for minor traffic offenses?

Answer: Usually no. Ice has communicated to local law enforcement that they do not have the resources to deport individuals for minor traffic violations, (e.g. speeding, no driver’s license, no insurance, running stop signs or traffic lights, equipment violations etc.) provided they are not habitual offenders of committing minor traffic offenses.

 

Do you know of any plans that ICE has to conduct “general round-ups” of undocumented persons?

Answer: ICE has communicated to local law enforcement that they have no intentions of performing a “general round-up” of undocumented people living in Teton County. Meaning, they do not intend to go around the community randomly looking for people who may be living here undocumented, and detain them to investigate their immigration status. The goal of ICE is to locate the “targeted” criminal alien and to take them into custody for removal through a deportation proceeding.

 

Will local law enforcement notify the community if they are aware that ICE is planning to come to Teton County to perform a search for “targeted” individuals?

Answer:  Local law enforcement WILL NOT notify the public if ICE is coming to Jackson to arrest specific “targeted” individuals whom they have identified for arrest and deportation.  Many of these individuals have criminal backgrounds and records that would create an officer safety concern for the ICE agents if they did not have the element of surprise.  Nor would local law enforcement want to impede the ICE agents from being able to do their job of removing individuals from the community that pose a safety risk.

 

If ICE contacted local law enforcement and indicated they would be coming to Jackson to do a “general round-up” or a “door-to-door sweep” would local law enforcement notify the public?

Answer: Yes, though ICE has communicated that they have no intentions of doing an operation of this nature.

 

Does the TCSO intend to participate in the 287(g) program that allows local officers to enforce federal immigration laws?

Answer: No, the TCSO has no plans to participate in the 287(g) program.  Additionally, we know of no Wyoming state law that allows for  Wyoming peace officers to enforce federal immigration law.

 

Is there ever a time when a deputy sheriff would need to know my immigration status?

Answer: Typically no, but deputies sometimes will need to inquire if it is pertinent to their investigation.   Deputies will not take someone into custody merely based upon them learning that someone is undocumented. One of the responsibilities of law enforcement when issuing a citation is to determine the identity of the person and to establish some reasonable assurance that they will show up to court if released with a citation. This is called a “flight-risk assessment”.  Knowing a person’s identity is critical for the deputy to consider a citation instead of arrest and by you carrying identification can help the deputy be assured that you are who you say you are, live where you say you live, and you have ties to our community.  These all indicate  you would show up to court if given a citation.  However, if you attempt to conceal your identity or mislead the deputy about who you are or where you live, you more than likely will be arrested and taken to jail. The bottom line is you should always be honest with the deputy about who you are and where you live so the deputy can allow you to leave with a citation instead of being arrested.

 

If I want further information about ICE and their local operations, who should I contact?

Answer: Local law enforcement can attempt to answer most of your questions, but we encourage you to contact ICE directly and ask them any information that you may be uncertain about. It is always best to get the information directly from the source, and ICE knows best what they intend to do or not do. ICE lists their Casper WY number as (307) 261-6590.

 

 

Open letter from the Sheriff’s Office and the Police Department on immigration

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Dear  Fellow Community Members:

We know a lot has been communicated over the last few months relative to possible changes in immigration policies and how these changes may affect people in the Town of Jackson and Teton County.   We are profoundly pleased to provide you a positive message in terms of what we know.

We are also pleased to tell you that the Teton County Sheriff’s Office and the Jackson Police Department have a very good relationship with the regional department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).   In fact, we had the opportunity to speak to the acting Field Office Director (Jeff Lynch) and three of his assistant supervisors yesterday.   Their offices are out of Denver, Colorado, but they cover Teton County.   The following are some assurances that we received from ICE:

1) There are no plans to conduct immigration raids in Teton County; either now or in the future.  If that policy ever changes, which they do not anticipate, they will make sure they let us know and then we can let you know.  Please trust us on that because it is the absolute truth.

2) They have not changed their policy on deporting people for committing minor traffic offenses.   The only exception might be for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, which while being a traffic offense, certainly is not a minor one.  This is supported by the fact that no person has been deported from Teton County for a minor traffic offense since President Trump took office. The ICE officials did add that there could be circumstances where an individual is a habitual offender (multiple repeated traffic violations) where they might review that case for consideration of deportation, but the case would be the exception, not the rule and would have to be egregious in the number of traffic offenses. The example given by ICE was a recent case in Denver, Colorado where a gentleman with 39 traffic infractions was deported due to habitually offending the traffic laws.

3)  The focus of ICE continues to be the security of the border, the deportation of people that commit serious (felony) crimes or people with serious crime convictions.  Their focus is not on the deportation of those people committing lesser offenses such as driving without a valid license.

4) They will usually initiate deportation proceedings on those people that have been deported on previous occasions or have a current deportation order on file or a deportation warrant, regardless of what new offense they may have committed, whether minor or serious in nature. People with prior deportation proceedings on their record and commit a new crime should expect that a new deportation proceeding will be undertaken by ICE. The message in this is to NOT commit criminal offenses that would lead a person being in this situation in the first place.

5) ICE has always notified us in the past of when they will be coming to Jackson and they plan to continue that practice.  When they come to Jackson it is to locate known fugitives (criminals) from justice, not to conduct broad sweeps for immigration violations.

Local law enforcement (officers and deputies) will not be engaged in enforcing immigration laws.  They will only be enforcing Wyoming State law violations.  We ask that if you do come into contact with our local law enforcement officers to please cooperate and communicate freely with them.   This allows for an overall better result from that encounter.

Unfortunately, there has been a lot of miscommunication disseminated in our community relating to what is going to happen.  We hope that this letter provides you with some sense of relief.   We have trust in what the regional ICE office tells us and now we only ask that you trust us.   We encourage you to continue to live, work and raise your families here with the knowledge you can do so without worrying if ICE is going to come knocking on your doors.

Our final message is this:

If you choose to be a contributing member of our community, and we hope  that you do,  please do so by living a life that is free of committing criminal offenses that puts others at risk, such as driving intoxicated, driving without a license or driving without insurance. Here in Teton County we have some of the highest rates of alcohol-related offenses in the State of Wyoming and we all need to be doing our part to keep our roadways safer for everyone who lives here.  We sincerely ask that you do your part as well.

Thank you and God Bless.

 

Jim Whalen                                                                         Todd Smith
Teton County Sheriff                                                         Jackson Police Chief

 

Immigration Letter (145 downloads)

 

Immigration Letter - Spanish (346 downloads)

Drugs Recovered During Search Warrant

Doina Seiciuc-Berglund Sheldon Berglund

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

On Monday March 14, 2017 at 12:41 PM, Teton County Sheriff’s Office Deputies and Detectives served a search warrant at a Jackson, WY apartment complex.  The warrant was part of an ongoing drug investigation.

A large amount of drugs and cash were recovered from the apartment.  Preliminary counts  are:  $4100.00 in cash, 215 syringes loaded with Cannabis oil, 196 grams of LSD infused gummy candy, 223 doses of MDMA (Molly), 388 grams of MDMA ecstasy tablets, 398 grams of MDMA (Molly), 4.6 grams of liquid LSD, and 46 grams of THC wax/”shatter”.  Initial estimate is a street value of approximately $80,000 in drugs was seized.

The two residents of the apartment were not home at the time the search warrant was served.  They were both located and arrested a short while later.  23 year old Sheldon Bo Berglund and 28 year old Doina Seiciuc-Berglund are facing numerous felony charges of Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Distribute and Conspiracy.

Sgt. Todd Stanyon

Teton County Sheriffs Office 180 South King Street P.O. Box 1885 Jackson, WY 83001 307.733.4052 www.tetonsheriff.org

Mangy Moose Theft

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

On Sunday February 26, 2017 at 11:39 PM an unknown male suspect stole a monogrammed “Mangy Moose” rug from the entry way of the Mangy Moose Saloon in Teton Village.  The rug is valued at $350.00.  The theft was captured on surveillance video.  The suspect is a white male,  35-45 years of age, mostly bald, and clean shaven.  At the time of the theft he was wearing a red coat with a grey turtleneck sweater underneath.  Attached is a photo of the suspect taken at the time of the theft.

Please contact the Teton County Sheriff’s Office with any information on the identity of the suspect.   You may remain anonymous.

Contact Det. Sgt. Todd Stanyon

MangyMoose

Your Assistance Requested — from Lower Valley Energy!

Residents in the Highway 390 and Teton Village area are asked to begin to curtail their power usage as Lower Valley brings electrical service back online to the Teton Village area.  Please unplug or turn off non critical electrical systems for the next few hours! —  TCSO Dispatch
Jackson, WY (2-11-17 11:20 am) Teton Village/Airport Outage Update
We currently expect to begin power restoration at 1pm today. The process could take the entire afternoon or longer. We will begin warming up the substation transformer which could take an hour. We will then begin to bring online the core commercial feeders first, then the rest of the affected area. We will then begin switching and rerouting power to neighborhoods around the airport – there may be momentary outages due to this switching. When bringing up so much power, there may be smaller outages and fuses failing – we will be alert and vigilant to these possibilities.
In anticipation of power restoration today, we request your assistance in bringing power back in the most stable way possible. We ask that you restrict your energy use to essential needs for the entire day, which includes reducing your heating and electronic usage. The area of curtailment would be the areas affected this week by the transmission poles failure. As we energize transformers and bring on feeders, the less load we serve, the more stability we can bring to the power restoration.
We would like to again extend our thanks to all the local and regional entities who have without hesitation sent tremendous resources to help us, most especially the 5 neighboring utilities: High Plains Power, Idaho Falls Power, Fall River Rural Electric, Bonneville Power, and Wasatch Electric, along with the crews from the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort. The emergency services team headed by Rich Ochs at the Emergency Operations Center has been truly exceptional. We appreciate the patience, support and understanding of this community we are proud to serve.
We have our call center fully staffed at 733-2446.

 

passport

Saturday Passport Day!

Big plans for spring break this year?  Always hard to get to the District Court Clerks Office during business hours to get that passport?

This Saturday, February 4th, The Clerk of District Court is please of offer a special Saturday Passport Application Day from 8am to 2pm!

Get those passport applications submitted or renewed before you make spring travel plans!

See the attached flyer for contact numbers and more information – be sure you know what you need before you show up!

Call the District Court Clerks office with questions!   307-733-2533

February-Passport-Flyer-Email-Version-.pdf (107 downloads)

Press Release

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From the Office of the Sheriff
Teton County, Wyoming
Sheriff Jim Whalen

 

 


 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

                On Saturday, January 21, 2017, at approximately 11:30 A.M., a Teton County Sheriff’s Office canine team made a traffic stop on South Highway 89 near Hoback Junction of a pickup truck pulling a camper.  During the course of the traffic stop, the deputy identified various indicators of possible illegal activity and was told by the operator and passenger of the vehicle that they had a small amount of marijuana.

The deputy deployed his canine and a received a positive alert for controlled substances on the pickup and camper.  A search was then conducted of the pickup and camper and over five pounds of marijuana was located, in addition to a felony amount of substance believed to be Lysergic acid diethylamide, commonly referred to as LSD.  Other smaller amounts of suspected cocaine and methamphetamine were located in addition to $2,400 in cash.  Various items used in the distribution of controlled substances and other drug paraphernalia were also located.

As result of the traffic stop, 28 year old Dustin Robinson and 28 year old Elizabeth Mason of Napa, California were arrested on various felony charges to include;  Felony Possession of Marijuana, Felony Possession of Marijuana with intent to distribute, Felony Conspiracy, Felony Possession of LSD, and Felony Possession of LSD with intent to distribute.  Additional charges may be filed in regards to the cocaine and methamphetamines seized.

On Monday, January 23, 2017, deputies executed a search warrant on the truck and camper.  During that search additional suspected LSD and methamphetamines were located in addition to over $13,000 cash.

The matter remains under investigation by the Teton County Sheriff’s Office Investigative Unit.

 

Contact:  Lieutenant Tom Combs

Teton County Sheriffs Office
180 South King Street
P.O. Box 1885
Jackson, WY 83001
307.733.4052
www.tetonsheriff.org

Back Country Caution

From the Office of the Sheriff
Teton County, Wyoming
Sheriff Jim Whalen

Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

With all of the fresh powder and the nice weekend ahead, the Teton County Sheriff’s Office wants people who enjoy the back country to use extreme caution.  “There is nothing worse than giving family members the bad news that a loved one has died, especially when that death was preventable.”, said Sheriff Jim Whalen.   Additionally, Sheriff Whalen said, “This weekend has the potential of being a banner weekend for search and rescue, but I don’t mean in a good way. ”

The majority of people who live in this part of the country live here to enjoy what the back country has to offer.  Those experiences can be almost magical.  However, for those people who will be going out we ask them to exercise extreme caution.   The avalanche danger is a real threat, skiing or snowboarding above your experience level is a real threat, and going on a back country excursion alone is a real threat.   Above all, we want people to be smart, which means being safe.

There is an initiative that has been sponsored by the Search and Rescue Foundation of Teton County: Back Country Zero.   This means, we have a goal to eliminate all preventable deaths in the back country in Teton County.   This is an initiative we should all support.  This weekend and in the remaining months of this ski season, let’s have everyone do their part in meeting that goal.

“We have a fantastic Search and Rescue team” said Sheriff Whalen, “but it would be even more fantastic if they did not get called this weekend.  Be smart, be safe and don’t be a victim!”

Contact Sheriff Jim Whalen

Teton County Sheriffs Office
180 South King Street
P.O. Box 1885
Jackson, WY 83001
307.733.4052
www.tetonsheriff.org