By: Tammy Curtis, Managing Editor
Sheriff Elect Shane Russell has been busy the last two and a half months since taking over the position of Chief Deputy at the Sharp County Sheriff’s Department on Oct. 1. Besides working on numerous cases including bringing a long term sex offender to justice, adjusting employee’s to optimize performance at the Sharp County Detention Center, he has found time to attend the Arkansas Sheriff’s School in Little Rock, helped extensively with the Sharp County Shop with a Cop on Dec. 17 and brought home a prestigious Officer of the Year award last week.
Russell, who defeated former Chief Deputy Aaron Presser in the May Primary, has worked in various law enforcement capacities. These include for the sheriff’s department and city police departments, most recently serving eight years as Highland Chief of Police. Russell accepted the position after Presser’s resignation. He explained he hoped to learn more about the inner workings and day to day responsibilities of the sheriff’s department to provide him with working knowledge for when he takes over the office Jan. 1.
Last week, Russell spent Dec. 12-16 in Little Rock at a sheriff’s school learning as much as possible about the duties and responsibilities of the sheriff, law enforcement standards, jail standards, the ethics commission, and laws related to running the detention center. This training is something Russell feels will better prepare him to serve the county as sheriff and best address the law enforcement needs of the county.
While in Little Rock, his wife, Alanna joined him on Dec. 13, to accept the Sharp County Law Enforcement Officer of the Year Award.
Attorney General Leslie Rutledge 20th annual Officer of the Year awards and recognition luncheon at the Benton Event Center. Rutledge presented Russell with the distinguished award. She said, “I could not be more grateful for Russell’s dedication as a public servant in Sharp County.”
Russell began his over 22 year career in law enforcement in Sharp County in 2000. He graduated in 2009 with a degree in Criminal Justice. He is very excited and feels is adequately prepared to begin his duties as sheriff. Russell said, “The first of the year is quickly approaching I’m excited to see what lies ahead for the county. The county is growing rapidly and I anticipate the Sheriff’s Office will grow right along with it to ensure that our residents are kept safe and free.”