New Sheriff’s Department Hire Approved in Marshall County

Photo by Alan Olson Marshall County Sheriff Kevin Cecil requests permission to hire a new deputy during Tuesday’s county commission meeting.

Facing a staff shortage due to some recent departures, the Marshall County Sheriff’s Office received permission from county commissioners Tuesday to hire a new deputy.

Sheriff Kevin Cecil spoke before the commission, seeking to hire Matt McClelland, currently employed as an officer with the Moundsville Police Department, later this month. The commission approved the hire during a brief meeting.

Cecil said the sheriff’s office employs 30 deputies, only half of which are on routine patrol — with others assigned to special task forces or as detectives or school resource officers. Two others are currently deployed in the military, with two more vacant spots from deputies taking positions elsewhere.

“We still have two guys in the military who are gone, and the earliest one will be back is in March, and the other in June,” Cecil said. “We’re really stretched thin for staff, because we’ve got so many positions open and with guys away. All of our guys are pulling double duty with different things, multitasking.”

Cecil said another prospective hire is undergoing background checks and is expected to be presented to the commission for hire next week. Last month, another deputy was approved to serve as a school resource officer for Marshall County Schools, who will be drawn from the ranks of experienced deputies.

Cecil added that in recent years, the sheriff’s office has become more proactive in handling cases, which increases their workload, rather than simply responding to calls.

“It’s a big deal to miss four people. Every shift feels the effects, and we’ve increased our call volume by thousands. We’re busier now than we’ve ever been, and shorter staffed. … As we get into more and more specialties and handle more issues, we also specialize in investigations. So, we’re proactive in that sense — we open investigations where we previously had been reactive.”

In other business, the commission also approved $24,000 in funding for maintenance at the West Virginia University Extension office and the Red Barn property, submitted by the Marshall County Activities Development Authority.

The funding will go toward a new roof and gutters, a new heating and air conditioning unit, and a new water line.