Press Release

Jan 20, 2016

Local Correction Officers Receive Medal of Valor Award Recognized for Brave Actions at the Scene of Fiery Crash

The Worcester County Sheriff’s Office has announced two of its correction officers have received the Medal of Valor Award from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Public Safety & Security. The Medal of Valor Award is awarded to a correctional employee who demonstrates actions above and beyond the call of duty, disregarding the potential for danger to him or herself. Officer Frank Crosby of Holden and Officer Robert Noonan Jr. of Webster received the awards during the 18th Annual Correctional Employee of the Year Ceremony held at the Massachusetts State House on October 2, 2015. The Medal of Valor Award is reserved for those acts which are performed in the course of a dangerous incident, a high degree of stress or risk to the employee or while saving or protecting the life of a colleague or inmate. On July 14, 2014, Officers Frank Crosby and Robert Noonan while transporting three inmates to the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office observed a vehicle rollover on the median strip of interstate 495. In response, the Officers immediately activated the emergency lights, stopped the transportation van to clear the left lane for emergency responders and contacted 911. Officer Noonan than ran to the vehicle and observed the operator was inextricably trapped and that fire had broken out. With the vehicle fully engulfed, Officer Noonan retrieved fire extinguishers and water bottles from Officer Crosby as well as concerned bystanders which then brought the fire under control. Sadly, the vehicle operator died from his injuries sustained during the accident. However no additional injuries were incurred that day due to the rapid response of Officers Crosby and Noonan to control the scene.

“The actions taken by Officers Frank Crosby & Robert Noonan on the day of July 14, 2014 are nothing short of heroic and embody the spirit of the Medal of Valor awards they received. It takes an incredible amount of courage to run towards that sort of fiery scene.” Evangelidis continued “This truly is an example of correctional officers going above and beyond the call of duty. They represent a true officer and we are all very proud of what they did.” said Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis.

Crosby is a 25 year veteran & Noonan a 14 year veteran with the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office.

officer pics

Officer Robert Noonan & Officer Frank Crosby are congratulated by WCSO Captain William Walker, Worcester County Sheriff Lewis G. Evangelidis & Governor Charles D. Baker after receiving the Medal of Valor Award at the 18th Annual Correctional Employee of the Year Awards Ceremony held at the Massachusetts State House on October 2, 2015

Jan 8, 2016

Sheriff swears in new class of correction officers

By LEOMINSTER CHAMPION

Worcester County Sheriff Lewis G. Evangelidis welcomed 12 new correction officers to the Worcester County
Sheriff ’s Office during a graduation ceremony on June 5 at Anna Maria College.

Leominster Resident Officer Jonathan Baldwin, who was the recipient of the Francis T. Foley Academic Award for the highest class average, as well as the Lawrence P. Sullivan Physical Fitness Award, was part of the 43rd graduating class of the Worcester County Sheriff ’s Office Basic Recruit Training Academy. The group, which also included five military servicemen, was the eighth class to graduate under Evangelidis’ increased hiring standards, which he introduced shortly after taking office.

Since taking office, Evangelidis has made significant changes to the hiring standards in order to professionalize the department. All correctional officer applicants must have, at minimum, an associate’s degree or at least two years of military service. They must also take and pass a written exam, physical fitness test, background check and psychological screening test. Evangelidis has also implemented a policy that prohibits the acceptance of letters of recommendation from politicians, while United States military applicants are given priority status in the hiring process.

“Our new officers have met the highest hiring standards in corrections today and have completed the finest training academy in Massachusetts,” Evangelidis said. “With over 6,200 inmates going through the jail doors each year, we look for the best individuals we can find to make our community a safer place and to ensure the public safety of our citizens. Corrections is a hard job with significant challenges. Our success, although difficult to quantify, will be measured by the crimes that are never committed.”

During the 12-week academy recruits are taught to handle the daily challenges of safely keeping the care, custody, and control of inmates incarcerated at the Worcester County Jail and House of Correction. Classroom topics include legal issues, mental health in a correctional setting, staff/inmate interaction, security/emergency procedures, interpersonal communication skills and use of force regulations.

In addition, instructors use hands-on training to teach defensive tactics, fire safety, use of restraint, searches, driver training, weapons qualification and physical fitness is held daily. Students are also quizzed on policy weekly and recruits must maintain an academic average of at least 70 percent in order to graduate.

Also during the academy, the recruits performed community service serving breakfast at St. John’s Food for the Poor Program in Worcester, as well as running as a unit in the Third Annual On Guard Initiative 5K, which is dedicated to raising awareness about the importance of mental health and suicide prevention among correction officers.

“All 12 of you graduating here today should be very proud, as you have demonstrated hard work and dedication over the past 12 weeks in overcoming the challenges presented,” Evangelidis said. “I look forward to working with each and everyone of you.”

sHERIFF cORRECTION OFFICER
Jonathan Baldwin

Jan 8, 2016

Local K9’s Shelter Me Premiere on PBS Benefits Local Animal Shelters

“The Worcester County Reserve Deputy Sheriff’s Association was pleased to provide donations this past week to our local animal shelters including; Sterling Animal Shelter, Worcester Animal Rescue League , Cocker Spaniel Rescue of New England, Second Chance Animal Shelter & New England All Breed Rescue. The donations were made possible thanks to our very successful Red Carpet Premiere & Benefit of the PBS series, “Shelter Me – Partners for Life” featuring our own Worcester County Sheriff’s Office K9 Nikita and his remarkable journey from homeless pup to top narcotics detecting K9 at the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office.” said Evangelidis

“Shelter animals make wonderful pets and incredible law enforcement partners. The Worcester County Sheriff’s Office is proud to have two shelter dogs Nikita and Jaxx, provided by the Sterling Animal Shelter, working hard each day in our narcotics detection unit. In addition, our partnership with the Second Chance Animal Shelter pairs behavioral shelter dogs with our low-risk inmates helping to better prepare those canines for future adoption into loving homes. Both programs involving shelter animals have had a positive impact for all at our correctional facility and we are thrilled to be able to give back to the animal shelter community with the proceeds from our recent benefit.” said Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis.

Worcester Animal Rescue League
Pictured in Photo 1:
Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis presents a donation check to the Worcester Animal Rescue League courtesy of the October 20, 2015 Local Premiere & Red Carpet Fundraising Event of “Shelter Me – Partners for Life” which featured Worcester County Sheriff’s Office – Lt. Thomas Chabot, Sheriff Lew Evangelidis & K-9 Nikita held at the Hanover Theatre.
sterling animal
Pictured in Photo 2:
Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis presents a donation check to the Sterling Animal Shelter courtesy of the October 20, 2015 Local Premiere & Red Carpet Fundraising Event of “Shelter Me – Partners for Life” which featured
Worcester County Sheriff’s Office – Lt. Thomas Chabot, Sheriff Lew Evangelidis & K-9 Nikita held at the Hanover Theatre.
second chance
Pictured in Photo 3:
Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis presents a donation check to the Second Chance Animal Shelter courtesy of the October 20, 2015 Local Premiere & Red Carpet Fundraising Event of “Shelter Me – Partners for Life” which featured Worcester County Sheriff’s Office – Lt. Thomas Chabot, Sheriff Lew Evangelidis & K-9 Nikita held at the Hanover Theatre.
new england all breed
Pictured in Photo 4:
Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis presents a donation check to New England All Breed Rescue courtesy of the October 20, 2015 Local Premiere & Red Carpet Fundraising Event of “Shelter Me – Partners for Life” which featured
Worcester County Sheriff’s Office – Lt. Thomas Chabot, Sheriff Lew Evangelidis & K-9 Nikita held at the Hanover Theatre.
cocker spaniel rescue
Pictured in Photo 5:
Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis presents a donation check to Cocker Spaniel Rescue of New England courtesy of the October 20, 2015 Local Premiere & Red Carpet Fundraising Event of “Shelter Me – Partners for Life” which featured Worcester County Sheriff’s Office – Lt. Thomas Chabot, Sheriff Lew Evangelidis & K-9 Nikita held at the Hanover Theatre.

Jan 7, 2016

Sheriff’s Annual Winter Coat Drive Spreads Warmth During Holiday Season

By Community Advocate Staff
COMMUNITY ADVOCATE
January 4, 2016

Worcester County Sheriff Lewis G. Evangelidis spent Dec. 8 and 9 visiting a number of greater Worcester area charities to distribute some much needed warm winter jackets.

The Sheriff’s Coat Drive is an annual event that provides new or lightly used winter coats to families in need throughout Worcester County and is a collaborative effort between the Sheriff’s Office of Community Corrections, Wachusett Mountain Ski Area, the Worcester County Reserve Deputy Sheriff’s Association, Warmer Winters of Leominster, Rutland Women’s Knitting Club, Bay Path Vocational Regional High School, Southbridge High School, Twin City Cleaners of Dudley, Independent Cleaners of Fitchburg as well as many other local businesses and community partners.

This year’s coat drive received a huge boost in early November with a special donation from Wachusett Mountain Ski Area of over 1,500 ski jackets. “With the tremendous donation of over 1,500 winter jackets from Wachusett Mountain Ski Area and the Crowley Family, we were able to have a huge head start on our successful coat drive which was able to help so many families in our community. We cannot thank them enough for their overwhelming generosity,” said Evangelidis.

During the distribution week, the sheriff paid a special visit to over a dozen local charitable organizations to personally hand deliver thousands of winter jackets including the Gardner Community Action Center, Cleghorn Neighborhood Center & Our Fathers House of Fitchburg, Spanish American Center of Leominster, Rutland Food Pantry, St. Anne’s Human Services of Shrewsbury, Rhodes House of Recovery in Millbury, TradeWinds Clubhouse, Catholic Charities & Arc of Hope of Southbridge as well as St. John’s Food for the Poor Program, Veterans Inc. & The Friendly House of Worcester.

“During the holiday season, the sheriff’s annual Winter Coat Drive helps to ensure that local families who may be in need are provided with an adequate winter coat. With over 3,500 winter jackets collected during this year’s coat drive, we were able to help more families and children in need than in year’s past,” Evangelidis said. “As the cold weather months approach and especially during this difficult economic time, it is extremely important to do all we can to help those in our community who may be less fortunate.”

R-Sheriffs-coat-drive-rs (1)
Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis with staff of St. Anne’s Human Services of Shrewsbury, the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office Community Outreach Team and volunteers, during the sheriff’s visit to drop off and distribute winter coats as part of his annual Winter Coat Drive.