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President's Message

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Sheriff Scott Nichols

Welcome to the Maine Sheriff’s Association web page. Maine’s Sheriffs have a long history of law enforcement which started before Maine became a state in 1820. Sheriffs at the time could be found investigating major crimes such as murder and regular complaints. Often it was the Sheriff and an appointed deputy responding to issues. Sheriffs were also responsible for being the jailers of their counties. In the early years people could be found being jailed for various crimes or even owing money!

Today, Maine’s Sheriffs, their Deputies and Corrections officers are the tip of the spear when it comes to public safety in rural communities. You will find Sheriff’s Deputies responded to a variety of calls while patrolling Maine. You will see them engaged in public relations, building relationships with today’s youth in schools. You will find them responding to domestic violence calls where they are picking up the pieces of a broken life by pointing out services available to them in their county. You will see them literally saving lives by responding to residences and providing first responder care before medical first responders arrive in the form of Narcan or the use of an AED.

Today’s Sheriffs and their Deputies are trained crime scene investigators and assist State Police investigators in all major crimes in their area including homicide. Sheriff Offices throughout the state are force multipliers to many municipal police departments. You will find Sheriff Deputies assisting local police with investigations, providing back up for a call, providing response for a request for K-9’s, accident reconstruction, drug investigations and so much more.

Today you will find Sheriff Offices heavily invested in local community partnerships with nonprofits to assist them in combating the scourge of drug abuse and mental health concerns. Today we realize that we cannot arrest our way out of some of society’s ills, by focusing on available programs through local healthcare providers, DHHS and behavioral health services. The end goal is a reduction of the number of calls people generate thus allowing us to work on other issues.

Today’s Sheriffs run county jails that serve as an emergency room in the law enforcement world. Unlike state prison facilities, people who are initially arrested are brought first to county jails. These people can be in various states of mind upon arrival from raging at the thought of being in custody to include drug addiction, with it all the issues that arise from that condition as well as severe mental health issues. During their short incarceration those people are cared for, seen by medical personnel, evaluated by mental health professionals, and provided initial Medically Assisted Treatment if needed. Upon release all are given information regarding resources that may be available to them to help them in their recovery and hopefully reduce the issue of recidivism.

Maine’s Sheriffs are more unique than any other law enforcement in the state because they are elected by the citizens they serve and are responsible only to them. The sixteen Sheriffs of Maine have come a very long way from their origins of over 200 years ago. The people of Maine can be proud of their local Sheriff’s Office, and the local Sheriff is humbled to be given the privilege to serve the people.

Sheriff Scott R. Nichols 

One Team. One Mission.

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