The purpose of P.B.A. Local #108 is
to increase the amount of interactivity we have with each other and other locals. The type of employment we all share is unique
to our career choices. We aim to improve the working conditions of law enforcement personnel everywhere and strive to
foster an atmosphere of growth and prosperity for our brother and sister officers. Only by developing solid relationships
and friendships, throughout our own department as well as those that surround us, will the organization ever become
even stronger. It is with great pride that we call ourselves officers and union members, for our call to duty is with each
other as well as the rest of our communities.
These are general descriptions of the functions
of the Union County Sheriff's Office, of which the members of the Policemen's Benevolent Association Local #108 are employed.
Below the listing of our various functions is a brief history of Sheriffs, the keeping of the peace, and the enforcement of
security staffing is comprised of nearly half of our members. The Sheriff's Officers assigned to the courthouse complex are
responsible for screening all who enter the various buildings and are constantly taking proactive steps to spot weapons and
items not suited for a safe professional environment. Within the courtrooms, the officers are responsible for both maintaining
courtroom security and safely transporting inmates to and from the courts. There are several different types of courts and
offices within the complex that include criminal, civil, family, and grand jury proceedings. Our officers are also responsible
for the safety of the judges, their staff, and the jurors that are constantly moving throughout the courthouse complex. While
their jobs can be tension filled and precarious at times, they take pride in the stellar safety record that they hold. They
are the backbone of our department and the first impression the public encounters when interacting within the Union
County Courthouse. They are consummate professionals and are truly committed to their tasks.
|EMERGENCY MEDICAL RESPONSE TEAM
assigned to the Emergency Medical Response Team are certified by the State of New Jersey Department of Health as Emergency
Medical Technicians (EMT's). They have all successfully completed the EMT Basic course along with the Healthcare Provider
CPR (Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation) certification. They respond to all medical incidents within the Union County Courthouse
complex and triage the situation prior to notification of any additional help. If the Sheriff's EMT's deem other medical
assistance is needed, they attempt to stabalize the patient(s) prior to the arrival of the Elizabeth Fire Department's EMS.
They provide us with emergency medical aid, treatment, and transportation to area hospitals. The Elizabeth Fire
Department can also provide first responder and temporaryl medical aid to us until one of their ambulance arrives. Our
EMT's are credited with aiding and providing life saving treatment to hundreds of citizens since their inception. They provide
an immeasurable service to the Union County Courthouse Complex and the City of Elizabeth.
The Domestic Violence Unit is is responsible for serving all temporary and final restraining orders and related warrants.
Every year there are hundreds of orders and warrants issued and served. During the course of executing these orders,
there may be a need for the confiscation of weapons that at times include firearms. While this may seem like a daunting task,
the unit carries out their responsibilities with safety being paramount. Despite all efforts, this job has inherent risks
that cannot be avoided. Several years ago, officers of this unit were involved in a situation that escalated to gunfire and
unfortunately both the suspect and one of our officers were injured in the firefight. Our officer thankfully survived a shot
to the face and has miraculously returned to duty. The suspect did not survive the wounds he received. While this reminder
looms in all our minds, the men and women of this unit continue to do their jobs with exemplary performance.
The Identification Bureau has two functions within the Union County Sheriff's Office. The first and paramount responsibility
is the identification of all persons that enter the Union County Jail or are scheduled to appear in Superior Court. This
is accomplished through fingerprint analysis and classification as well as each person being interviewed, photographed, and
identified as a possible security threat through their association with gangs and criminal activity groups. The second responsibility
is to process crime scenes within Union County. The members of this bureau are highly trained and some have graduated from
a 10 week forensics course with the federal government. These officers use the newest technology to identify and collect possible
evidence, identify and document blood spatter patterns, plot projectile trajectory and reconstruction of the scene, DNA collection,
fingerprint identification and collection, fire scene evidence documentation and collection, autopsy documentation, and
all processing of scenes as dictated by the Union County Prosecutor's Office. These officers are also entrusted to train
other police departments in the skills of evidence identification and collection at the Union County Police Academy in
Scotch Plains, New Jersey. The men and women of this unit have earned their reputation throughout Union County and continue
to excel in their endeavors.
|MONUMENT HONORING GIT & OTHER CANINES
The K-9 Search and Rescue Unit was created in 1983 with one tracking dog and has grown to the current level of 12 canines
and is also a training facility for other agencies. The unit utilizes German Shepherds, Belgian Malinois, Labrador Retrievers,
and Bloodhounds. They can perform various functions in several different specialties as follows:
Searching building for hidden suspects, tracking
suspects from the scene of a crime, tracking lost/missing persons, criminal apprehension, or article search for evidence,
the officers canine partners are also trained to protect their handler.
Detection of narcotics, explosives, cadaver,
or accelerants. All officers assigned to the Unit take their partners home with them. The Unit provides 24 hour, 7 days a
week coverage to all municipalities within Union County as well as mutual aid to any other canine unit or police department
in the State of New Jersey. This unit is credited with thousands of narcotics arrests and millions of dollars in confiscated
items. The members of this proud unit also served countless days at ground zero after the towers fell on September 11, 2001.
Their dedication and camaraderie serves as a model for us all to follow.
The K-9 Search and Rescue Unit is also responsible
for the implementation of the Project Lifesaver Program. The Program utilizes a watch sized transmitter worn by an elderly
person suffering from Dementia or a young child suffering from Autism that can be tracked by a receiver operated by a member
of the unit. The transmitter works on a radio frequency that is always emitting a tractable signal. There is a fee associated
with the program for all participants.
The K-9 Search and
Rescue Unit is also a statewide training facility. There are four state certified K-9 trainers in the unit that have assisted
in the training and creation of numerous K-9 units throughout the State. Numerous Federal, State, County and Local K-9 Units
come to the K-9 training facility in Summit for initial training, re-certification or in-service training on a monthly basis.
The K-9 Search and Rescue Unit has had the unfortunate incident
of one of the K-9’s being shot and killed in the line of duty only days after searching Ground Zero in September of
2001. A memorial stands in Git Anders honor at the entrance to the K-9 Training Facility. The monument also contains the names
of other dogs that have proudly served the Union County Sheriff's Office and have passed.
of legal process are responsible for the serving of various types of notices and warrants that are generated as the result
of civil proceedings. Civil orders and evictions are not without their complications and dangers. While the officers of this
unit conduct themselves with a professional attitude, it does not mean that the citizen served will reciprocate. Unfortunately,
even this unit has had occurrences with beligerent and unruly individuals. It takes a certain type of officer to be able to
handle the situations they are faced with and avoid serious confrontations. They are applauded for their dedication to civility
in the course of their duties.
|SHERIFF'S LABOR ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
assigned to the Sheriff's Labor Assistance Program (S.L.A.P.) are tasked with the responsibility of maintining watch over
men and women who have been placed on this program. If requested and recommended, the courts can assign people to labor that
aids the communities of Union County in lieu of incarceration in the Union County Jail. The individuals sentenced to S.L.A.P.
are assigned to Sheriff's Officers and they are taken throughout the county and put to work. They can be seen in the county
parks or on the roadsides throughout the county. The benefit is two fold, for while they are serving their sentences their
labor helps to beautify, clean, and maintain certain aspects of the 21 municipalities within Union County. The officers of
this unit can be credited with the daunting task of maintaining the integrity of the work these people perform, while
being a visible deterrent to others.
function of this unit is the safe and secure transport of inmates from the Union County Jail to other correctional facilities, hospitals
and specialized institutions for medical and/or psychiatric treatment, and municipal courts. They are burdened
with the care and responsibility of many different types of county inmates, some of which may be extremely dangerous. Members
of this unit have also been utilized, along with local police departments, in various types of raids and during times of civil
unrest. The officers that comprise this group are credited with the movement of thousands of inmates year after year and
hold an incredible safety record. Their dedication to duty and professional attitude make them an asset to our ranks.
The warrant squad is responsible for locating and apprehending fugitives with active bench warrants primarily from Union
County. These men and women are wanted for many reasons which may include failure to appear in court, violation
of probation or parole, jumping bail, violation of temporary or final restraining orders, and other crimes and violations.
There are also individuals with criminal warrants from other counties and/or states that are brought to the attention of Union
County officials because they may be in the surrounding area. This unit also works together with various local, state, and
federal law enforcement agencies to accomplish these goals. While the execution of any arrest warrant is an extremely
dangerous undertaking, our members take all the precautions possible to ensure that dangerous situations are kept to a minimum.
The warrant squad has a long history of successful apprehensions and continues to make the rest of us proud.
origins of Sheriffs and Conservators of the Peace
A conservator of the peace is defined as a public official authorized to conserve and maintain the
public peace. Under common law, conservators of the peace included judges, police, sheriffs, and constables.
The king is mentioned as the first. Then come the chancellor, the treasurer,
the high steward, the master of the rolls, the chief justice ant the justices of the King’s-bench, all the judges in
their several courts, sheriffs, coroners, constables; and some are said to be conservators by tenure, some by prescription,
and others by commission.
are, ex officio, conservators of the peace within their respective counties, and it is their duty, as well as that
of all constables, coroners, marshals and other peace officers, to prevent every breach of the peace, and to suppress every
unlawful assembly, affray or riot which may happen in their presence. As Conservators of the Peace, police have long had the
authority to order groups of persons threatening the public peace to disperse, or to arrest without a warrant for a breach
of the peace.
It is hereby made the duty
of the Police Force at all times of day and night, and the members of such Force are hereby thereunto empowered, to especially
preserve the public peace, prevent crime, detect and arrest offenders, suppress riots, mobs and insurrections, disperse unlawful
or dangerous assemblages, and assemblages which obstruct the free passage of public streets, sidewalks, parks and places.
Nor is the idea that the police are also peace officers simply a quaint anachronism.
In most American jurisdictions, for example, police officers continue to be obligated, by law, to maintain the public peace.
Police officers are not, and have never been, simply enforcers of the criminal
law. They wear other hats — importantly, they have long been vested with the responsibility for preserving the public
peace. See, e.g., O. Allen, DUTIES AND LIABILITIES OF SHERIFFS 59 (1845) (“As the principal conservator of the peace
in his county, and as the calm but irresistible minister of the law, the duty of the Sheriff is no less important than his
authority is great”); E. Freund, POLICE POWER § 86, p. 87 (1904) (“The criminal law deals with offenses after
they have been committed, the police power aims to prevent them. The activity of the police for the prevention of crime is
partly such as needs no special legal authority”).
Under early Saxon law, each county or shire in England was divided into an indefinite number of
hundreds, each composing ten groups of ten families governed by a constable with his own court. Each member of the group and
subgroup was individually responsible for preserving the peace and apprehending criminals. This is shown in laws recorded
by Saxon kings, such as:
Let him who takes
a thief, or to whom one taken is given, and he then lets conceals the theft, pay for the thief according to his wer. If he
be an ealdorman, let him forfeit his shire, unless the king is willing to be merciful to him.
That a thief shall be pursued.... If there be present need, let it be made
known to the hundredman, and let him make it known to the tithingmen; and let all go forth to where God may direct them to
go. Let them do justice on the thief, as it was formerly the enactment of Edmund I.
And the man who neglects this, and denies the doom of the hundred, and the same
be afterwards proved against him, let him pay to the hundred xxx. pence; and for the second time lx. pence, half to the hundred,
half to the lord. If he do so a third time, let him pay half a pound; for the fourth time, let him forfeit all that he owns,
and be an outlaw, unless the king allow Him to remain in the country.
In 920 AD, King Edward the Elder set forth that the reeve or gerefa of the shire, a royal
official, should hold court each month to try cases of both civil and criminal matters. The modern term “sheriff”
originates from the Saxon "shire reeve" and the term gerefa. The shire reeve was the earliest public official
charged specifically with keeping the King’s peace.
I will that each reeve have a gemot always once in four weeks, and so do that every man be worthy of folk-right;
and that every suit have an end, and a term when it shall be brought forward. If that any one disregard, let him make bot
as we before ordained.
The Norman invasion
of England eventually disrupted the Saxon hundreds system. Gradually, disregard for collective responsibility in conserving
the peace led to relaxed requirements for the King’s subjects to appear at each session of court. The baronage and clergy
were no longer required to appear unless specifically required, and persons having matters before the court could have attorneys
appear on their behalf. In response to the loss of this collective responsibility, Henry III of England appointed four specific
knights in each county deemed responsible for conserving the peace.
The King to Alured de Lincoln, Ivo de Rocheford, John de Strods, and William de Kaymens,
of the county of Dorset, greeting: Whereas, in our Parliament lately holden at Oxford, it was ordained, that all
excesses, transgressions, and injuries, done in our realm, should be inquired into by four knights of each county, that (the
truth thereof being known) those offences might be more easily corrected; which same knights should take their corporal oaths,
in the full county court, or (if such county court be not speedily held) before the sheriffs and coroners; as we have enjoined
all our sheriffs faithfully to take such inquisition as aforesaid, we command you, by the fealty you owe us, that, having
yourselves, first taken the oath beforementioned, by the oaths of good and lawful men of the county aforesaid, by whomsoever
and upon whomsoever lately perpetrated; and this as well concerning justices and sheriffs as our bailiffs and other persons
whatsoever. And such inquisition, under your own seals, as well as those of the jurors, you shall bring to Westminster, in
the octaves of St. Michael, to be delivered by our own hands to our council there. Moreover, we have commanded our sheriff
of the aforesaid county, that, having taken your oaths in form aforesaid, he cause good and lawful men, by whom the said inquisition
may be best made, to come before you, at such days and places as you may appoint.
The specific term “Conservator of the Peace” came into being upon
the codification and expansion of the authority of the office under Henry III’s son, Edward I. Under Edward I, Conservators
of the Peace were not only charged with keeping the peace, but where also given the authority to try certain offenses previously
heard by the Reeve’s court. These itinerant judges were the earliest historical predecessors to the Justice of the Peace.
Conservators of the Peace appointed under Edward I were considered to be in positions of great public trust and social stature.
Edward, Earl of Cornwall, was appointed conservator of the King’s peace
for the counties of Middlesex, Essex, Hertford, Cambridge, Huntingdon, Norfolk, Suffolk, Kent, Surrey, Oxford, Bedford, Bucks,
Berks, Northhampton, Lincoln, and Rutland; and the various sheriffs, nobles, knights, and other persons in those counties,
are commanded to assist the Earl, and those whom he shall depute under him to keep the peace. Rot. Walliæ 10 EDW. I.
de Amundeville was in the same year appointed conservator of the peace, together with the sheriff, in the county
of Warwick; but the sheriff was to take counsel and direction from Richard de Amundeville as to what he did for the
better preservation of the peace. Rot. Pat. 10 EDW. I. m. 8.
Besides the above exalted personages, others were commissioned in the same year
to go into counties, for the purpose of making inquiries concerning those who were indicted for infractions of the peace,
and other offences, and of apprehending all those found guilty, and delivering them to the sheriff, to be kept in ward until
the King should further direct. Rot. Pat. 10 EDW. I. m. 8.
Immediately after the death of Edward I and the accession of Edward II of England in 1307, officers were appointed
in every county in England as Conservators of the Peace. Their commissions stated that they shall constantly reside within
their respective counties, visit every place therein and the King’s laws shall be strictly observed. If any disturbances
occur, the Conservators are to raise the posse comitatus, arrest the offenders and keep them in custody until the
King shall further direct.
Edward III strengthened
the office and authority of the Conservator of the Peace, but not necessarily for any altruistic interest in maintaining the
In the reign of Edward III,
an act of parliament ordained “that in every shire of the realm good men and lawful which were no maintainers of evil
nor barrators in the county, should be assigned to keep the peace, …to repress all intention of uproar and force even
in the first seed thereof and before that it should grow up to any offer of danger.” Lambard, book 1, ch. 4; 2 Hale,
P. C., ch. 7, note 1. The real purpose of this act seems to have been to enable the king, Edward III, to appoint men upon
whom he could rely in the different counties, to repress any effort of the people to release his father, Edward II, from prison.
When the English colonists settled at Jamestown in 1607 they brought not only
the common customary law of England, but the law as modified by English statutes of general operation up to that time.
We see here, at the beginning of permanent civilized life on this continent,
not only the contemplation of and provision for civil offices among the colonists, but also the practical application of the
principle of local self-government, a principle of Anglo-Saxon derivation which, surviving the Norman Conquest, has always
obtained, to a great and increasing extent, in England, and has ever been one of the fundamental principles of civil liberty
in the rise, growth and progress of governments and governmental institutions in America.
With formation of government within the American colonies, the offices of sheriff,
justice and constable were adopted from the English common law and the English ordinances. A warrant issued by a Native American
magistrate directed an early colonial constable to arrest a suspect.
1. I, Hidondi.
2. You, Peter Waterman.
3. Jeremy Wicket.
4. Quick you take him.
Fast you hold him.
6. Straight you bring him.
7. Before me, Hidondi.
A minister from a Massachusetts Bay colony described an arrest warrant that was served by early
American constables in a private home in 1651.
Sunday after their arrival, ‘not having freedom in our spirits,’ says Clark, ‘for want of a clear call from
God to go unto the public assemblie to declare there what was the mind, and counsel of God concerning them,’ he ‘judged
it a thing suitable’ to hold divine service in the house and with the family of Witter, and four or five others who
came in to join their worship. While thus engaged, there came in two constables with a warrant for their arrest. A request
to finish the services was denied, and ‘the erroneous persons being strangers,’ whom the writ of Justice Bridges
commanded should be brought before him in the morning, were marched off as prisoners — bail being refused — to
the inn for safe keeping.
of Virginia's adaptation of the ancient common law office of Conservator of the Peace was described by the Virginia Supreme
Court in 1923:
of conservators of the peace is a very ancient one, and their common law authority to make police inspection, without a search
warrant, extends throughout the territory for which they are elected or appointed, as the case may be, in private
as well as in public places, and upon private as well as public property, unless inhibited from entry for such purpose without
a search warrant by some rule of the common law, or by the Constitution, or by statute. It was provided in EDW. III, ch. 15,
that “in every shire of the realm good men and lawful, which are no maintainers of evil nor barretors [sic] in the county,
shall be assigned to keep the peace;” of which it was said that this “was as much as to say that in every shire
the King himself should place special eyes and watches over the people, that should be both willing and wise to foresee, and
should be also enabled with meet authority to repress all intention of uproar and force even in the first seed thereof and
before that it should grow up to any offer of danger.” This was but declaratory of the common law authority of conservators
of the peace. That authority could not have been at all efficiently exercised if a search warrant had had to be first obtained
before any entry could have been lawfully made upon any land in private tenure. And while the duties and powers of police
officers are, in modern times, largely defined and regulated by statute, it is elementary that the common law may be relied
on to supply many incidents (of their powers), “and others are based on what may be necessarily implied from the powers
The word "sheriff" is a contraction of the term "shire reeve".
The term, from the Old English scīrgerefa, designated a royal official responsible for keeping the peace (a "reeve")
throughout a shire or county on behalf of the king. The term was preserved in England notwithstanding the Norman Conquest.
From England the term spread to several other countries, like Scotland, Ireland, and the United States. In the United States,
a sheriff is generally, but not always, the highest law enforcement officer of a county. A sheriff is in most cases elected
by the population of the county. In some states the sheriff is officially titled "High Sheriff", although the title
is very rarely actually used. The political election of a person to serve as a police leader is an almost uniquely American
tradition. A sworn law enforcement officer working for a sheriff is called a "sheriff's deputy", "sheriff's
officer", or something similar, and is authorized to perform the sheriff's duties. In some states, a sheriff may not
be a sworn officer, but merely an elected official in charge of sworn officers. These officers may be subdivided into "general
deputies" and "special deputies". In some places, the sheriff has the responsibility to recover any deceased
persons within their county, in which case the full title is "sheriff-coroner". In some counties, the sheriff's
principal deputy is the warden of the county jail or other local correctional institution. In some areas of the United States,
the sheriff is also responsible for collecting the taxes and may have other titles such as tax collector or county treasurer.
Although rare, the sheriff may also be responsible for the county civil defense, emergency disaster service, rescue service,
or emergency management. In the U.S., the relationship between the sheriff and other police departments varies widely from
state to state, and indeed in some states from county to county. In the northeastern U.S., the sheriff's duties have been
greatly reduced with the advent of state-level law enforcement agencies, especially the state police and local agencies such
as the county police. In Vermont, for instance, the elected sheriff is primarily an officer of the County Court, whose duties
include running the county jail and serving papers in lawsuits and foreclosures. Law enforcement patrol is performed as well,
in support of State Police and in the absence of a municipal police agency in rural towns. Some such towns contract with the
sheriff to provide dedicated law enforcement presence in lieu of creating a local police force. Sheriff offices may coexist
with other county level law enforcement agencies such as county police, county park police, county detectives, etc.
The position of sheriff now exists in various countries:
Sheriffs are administrative legal officials (similar to bailiffs) in Ireland, Australia, and Canada.
Sheriffs are judges in Scotland.
Sheriff is a ceremonial position in England, Wales and India.
In the United
States of America the role of a sheriff varies between different states and counties. In many rural areas, sheriffs and their
deputies are the principal form of police, while in urban areas they may have more specialized duties, such as prisoner transport,
serving warrants, service of process or police administration.
British English, the political or legal office of a sheriff is called a shrievalty.