Teen Court Banquet Held To Honor Volunteers
The Charles County Sheriffs Office held the fourth annual Teen Court Banquet on Oct. 25 at the Waldorf Jaycees Community Center to honor the youth and adult volunteers who make the program a success.
Teen Court, established in Charles County in 2000, allows first-time youth offenders the opportunity to accept responsibility for minor crimes without incurring a criminal record. Participants appear before a jury of their peers and an adult community judge and the jury collectively decides on a sentence for the participant.
The Honorable Kevin Wedding, chief judge of the Charles County Orphans Court, served as the evenings master of ceremonies and Charles County Sheriff Frederick E. Davis presented the awards.
Chief Community Judge Diana Donahue and Community Judges Beverly Deniston, Doug Cooley, Kenneth Talley and Victor Curtis were honored first. Donahue has been with the program since its inception and has played a key role in developing and implementing the procedures. She also conducts many of the youth attorney training sessions. Cooley has volunteered for five years and is the senior judge, overseeing mostly traffic cases. Talley, who has volunteered for more than two years, delivers a powerful message to the respondents by incorporating his previous experience as a public defender. Curtis is the newest judge, having been appointed in August, but has been with the program since its inception as a senior adult volunteer. Deniston was honored with a special award for having served as a judge since 2003. She has used her experience working with troubled youth in Charles County Public Schools to help Teen Court participants.
Juvenile Resource officers Cpl. Dorrell Savoy, Cpl. Donald Kabala, Cpl. Mark Kaylor, PFC Paul Anderson, PFC Christopher Cusmano, PFC Patrick Hood, POI Jennifer Vaino and Maryland State Police Trooper Mike Cox were honored for their eagerness to help individual students and address each students concerns. CFC Matt Baden accepted an award on behalf of Capt. Gale Willett, Sgt. Dale Overstreet and the Court Security Unit, who provides after-hours Courthouse security during Teen Court.
Other adults were honored for volunteering to manage juries, serve as bailiffs, establish and maintain the Teen Court Web site, perform exit interviews and provide other Teen Court services. The senior adult volunteers include Gregory Jones, senior volunteer, Michelle St. Germain, Van Mance, Edith Turi and Allen Stevenson. New adult volunteers include Wanda Swann, Diane Davis, Christy Klingman and Daniel Ivan.
Students in the high school Criminal Justice program and their instructor, PFC Kris Syvertsen, were acknowledged for performing bailiff duties.
Teen Courts youth volunteers were honored at the end of the ceremony. They include Prosecuting Attorney Dylan Cahn, Defense Attorney MacKenzie Arnold, Lindsey Cookey, Stanice Tate, William Hobson, Tyler Russell, Lashae Doyle, Jania Osborne, Jeana Bonds, Naomi Coleman, Susan Igbokwe, Chinnonso Igbokwe, Dawn Burks, Michael Stevenson, Porsha Barr, Kezia Barnett, Victoria Mance, Andrey Mazuera, Gavin Reen, Robert Cranford, Arslan Yousfi, Joseph Hughes, Rebecca Dillon, Steven Smallwood, Amanda Lowe, Danica Hamilton, Taylor Sorrells, Christina Davis-Robers, Jordan Myers, Mercedes Smoot, Katherine Bomkamp and Andre Jackson, who received the Most Outstanding Youth Volunteer Award because he is the most improved volunteer and attended the most Teen Court sessions.
The Teen Court program also thanked the following organizations who have contributed to its success: the Greater Waldorf Jaycees, the Southern Maryland Chapter of the American Red Cross and the Waldorf Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue Squad.
For more information on the Charles County Teen Court Program, please call Teen Court Coordinator Maryellen Kraese 301- 609-3916 or visit the Web site at www.ccteencourt.org.
Charles County Sheriffs Office, Bike Doctor, Gear Up For Holiday Bike Giveaway
The Charles County Sheriffs Office and Bike Doctor of Waldorf are gearing up to help 50 local children receive new bicycles this holiday season as part of the eighth annual holiday bicycle giveaway program.
Each year, the Charles County Sheriffs Office raises money to purchase new bicycles from Bike Doctor, whose employees order and assemble the bicycles at no cost to the Sheriffs Office. Just before Christmas, community policing officers deliver the bicycles and a new helmet to the children. The Sheriffs Office works with Charles County Public Schools to identify the students whose families would most benefit from assistance in providing this special gift to their children.
For the past eight years, this program has been possible by the giving spirit of the citizens and businesses of our community who make donations, including the Bike Doctor, who has been our partner since the beginning of the program, said Charles County Sheriff Frederick E. Davis.
Anyone who would like to contribute to the holiday bicycle giveaway fund is asked to contact PFC Clarence Black of the Community Policing Unit at 301-609-3282, ext. 365 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Checks should be made payable to the Charles County Sheriffs Office and Bicycle Donation Fund should be indicated in the memo section.
Charles County Serhiffs Office Announces Grant From Target
The Charles County Sheriffs Office was recently awarded a $2,000 grant from Target to support the Juvenile Resources Section. Loss Prevention Coordinator Chanel Brown and store employees presented the check to Sheriff Frederick E. Davis, Capt. F. Michael Wyant and Sgt. Carl Rye, supervisor of Juvenile Resources, on Oct. 24 at Targets Waldorf store.
The funding will enable the purchase of bicycles for the Juvenile Resource officers. Sixty applications were submitted to Target from various law enforcement agencies and only five were selected to receive the grant.
According to Target, the company gives back more than $2 million a week to its local communities through grants and special programs. Since opening its first store in 1962, Target has partnered with nonprofit organizations, guests and team members to help meet community needs. Additionally, Target team members and retirees donate more than 315,000 hours to more than 7,000 projects each year.
The Juvenile Resources Section provides one officer in every high school and beginning next year, an officer will be assigned to each middle school as well. The officers promote positive interaction between law enforcement and the students of Charles County. Officers administer programs that build self esteem, provide guidance that encourages good decision making and teach students to be positive role models in the community. These officers work closely with the administrative staff, teachers and students in their schools to provide prevention programs including Safe Schools, Truth and Consequences, Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) and the Summer Youth Achievement Program.
I am grateful to Target for selecting the Sheriffs Office to receive this grant, said Sheriff Davis. The purchase of the bicycles will make our Juvenile Resource officers more accessible and allow them to respond quickly to any incident.