Calvert Sheriff Mike Evans hosted a community forum Feb. 12. 

PHOTO COURTESY OF THE CALVERT COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE

Prince Frederick, MD – Concerned citizens attended an open meeting Feb. 12 held at Calvert High School (CHS) and hosted by Sheriff Mike Evans [R].  The previously advertised evening meeting was to focus on the opioid epidemic, however, a few armed robberies that had occurred the previous week also had the locals worried. Evans indicated the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office responded quickly after two armed robberies and a strong-armed robbery at three separate businesses occurred.
“When we see something like unusual like this happening, we pull out all the stops,” said Evans. “We started to put the plan together when the second one happened.” suspect apprehensions of all of the incidents were made days after the Feb. 12 meeting. Evans told the gathering that a robbery that occurred late last year at the Prince Frederick Safeway is expected to be solved and closed out soon.

Evans noted that the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office was the first in the State of Maryland to use Narcan ® (a medication that blocks the effects of opioids) in response to reports of drug overdoses. “We made almost 1,000 arrests for drugs in 2017,” said Evans, adding that simply arresting drug users and possessors is not going to solve the problem. “Our job in law enforcement is to get them off the street. Then they have to get help.”

Calvert County Sheriff’s Office Drug Intelligence Program Coordinator Joe Windsor stated that Calvert County had 33 drug overdoses resulting in death in 2017. Many of the deadly drugs, such as heroin, are being purchased in the Annapolis area and brought into the county. To date in 2018, there have been two overdose deaths in Calvert.

“Our focus is stopping drugs from coming into the county,” Evans said. Successes in Calvert’s fight against drugs in 2017 included the seizure of approximately 300 grams of heroin. Evans added that he believes that school education programs and the Calvert County Circuit Court’s Drug Court are also helping. Out in the field, the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office now has 14 K9s helping to locate drugs during searches.

Evans was asked about the sheriff’s office’s participation in the Arts and Entertainment (A&E) Network’s “Live P.D.”  The sheriff stated, “I thought it showed us in a good light. I’d like to think we’re doing a good job.” Evans said he wasn’t sure if there would be any further segments of the program filmed in Calvert. The sheriff also acknowledged that members of the Solomons Business Association were happy with the depiction of customers of the island’s restaurants and bars as intoxicated drivers.

Other topics discussed included the sheriff office’s implementation of the “Sheriff’s Outreach to Loved Ones in Distress” (S.O.L.I.D.) program to aid those citizens dealing with drug addictions. As to the possibility Calvert might get red-light cameras, Evans admitted, “I’m not pushing for them.” The sheriff said he thought the speed cameras in school zones were working well. “The revenue has been beneficial.” The sheriff also promised to consider having a deputy stationed at Route 2 and Clyde Jones Road when Sunderland Elementary School is in session.

According to a sheriff’s office press release, the sheriff “will be hosting more community forums over the coming months.”

Contact Marty Madden at marty.madden@thebaynet.com