New officers sworn in
SNOHOMISH - The 18 officers who will serve the city of Snohomish under a Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office contract were sworn in last week in a ceremony at the Snohomish Senior Center.
Officers’ badges were pinned to their uniforms by their family members, and a handful of kids were in the audience wearing their Sunday best.
Sheriff John Lovick said the sheriff’s office is excited about the Snohomish contract.
“This is the largest partnership we’ve had, so we’re excited about that,” Lovick said.
When asked how he feels about the 18 chosen to serve the city, he said the office chose the best of all the applicants.
“This community has been well served and it will continue to be well served. We have some outstanding officers here,” Lovick said.
Five Snohomish officers did not pass the sheriff’s test and were not offered a position.
Their positions were filled through a competitive bid process within the sheriff’s office.
As the largest of the contract cities, Snohomish benefits by having a competitive bid process, Lt. Susy Johnson said. In smaller contract cities, officers are chosen by seniority, she said.
When it became apparent last month there were five positions to fill in Snohomish, contract Police Chief John Flood sent out a mass e-mail to county officers.
Officers have to pass four tests to be offered employment with the sheriff’s office: mental and physical tests, a background check and a polygraph test.
If an officer fails just one of those tests, they are not offered a position.
Last month, five Snohomish officers were informed they would not be able to serve with the sheriff’s office.
The five county officers chosen to replace them were “the highest achievers in the pool” of applicants, Johnson said.
Officers submitted a letter of interest and a resume, which was a way to get “people who truly wanted to come here,” Flood said.
Flood then looked at their work history and experience, including the results of their most recent evaluations.
“Since I knew all of the applicants, it was a fairly easy choice,” Flood said.
The city’s police force now has some officers trained in SWAT, crime prevention, crime analysis and other specialties, he said.
“We have some strong leaders. It’s all about the complete package,” Flood said.
Officers working in the city will be able to offer a higher level of service because they have more time than officers who work the larger geographical area of the county, he said.
“We can spend that extra 10 minutes with a citizen and address their needs,” he said.
Flood was given the authority to enforce city code at an informal swearing-in by City Manager Larry Bauman on Friday, Dec. 30.
By STEPHANIE KOSONEN
Published Jan. 11, 2012