Community Message from Calvert Sheriff Mike Evans

Community Message from Calvert Sheriff Mike Evans:

My first priority has always been and will continue to be the safety of all Calvert County citizens. I am appalled by the death of George Floyd by a law enforcement officer and my condolences go out to his family. I want to make it clear that the men and women of the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office perform their duties and enforce the law without partiality or prejudice. Our deputies receive extensive training and continuing education in conflict resolution and de-escalation. The Calvert County Sheriff’s Office was the first in the Southern Maryland region to equip deputies with body cameras. Every use of force is documented and reviewed by command staff. I am proud to say these resources have demonstrated the professionalism of my staff. Should a deputy act in a manner contrary to agency policies and procedures, the incident will be thoroughly investigated by the Office of Professional Standards, and that deputy will be held accountable if misconduct occurred. From top to bottom, my staff takes great pride in the relationship we have with the community and appreciate the value of your trust and confidence.

Last evening, I together with law enforcement officers, Retired Police Chief Alphonso Hawkins and President of the Board of County Commissioner Kelly McConkey walked with Pastor Jeff Long and others conducting a peaceful march. Law enforcement protected the participants by stopping traffic, joined them as they prayed on the courthouse lawn and concluded the peaceful march at the Prince Frederick Shopping Center. Pastor Long thanked all the participants, law enforcement officers and ended the march stating it was a success.

Unfortunately, after a peaceful march a small fraction of individuals were determined to make a positive event into one of negativity through their own separate agenda. These individuals marched onto Duke Street toward the Courthouse without regard for their safety or the safety of others. As your Sheriff, it is my duty to enforce the law for everyone’s safety. I along with other community leaders pleaded with these individuals to keep this event peaceful and respect its positive intent. After a considerable amount of time, it was made clear that they would not deter from their agenda. I made the decision to take enforcement action to clear the street. The individuals were informed that if they did not disburse, they could be arrested and as a last resort tear gas was deployed to disburse the crowd in hopes of avoiding arrests. There were two arrests, no reported injuries and minor damage to one sheriff’s vehicle.

Most importantly, I want to thank the community who joined us in a peaceful march and to tell all of our citizens we hear you and support you.

I am available twenty-four seven, to speak or meet with any member of our community. Without you, we could not continue to keep our county the safe place it is. As always, if you see something, say something.

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