The Waldo County Sheriff’s Office is dedicating more time to domestic violence cases.
They’ve created a new position – a full-time, domestic violence investigator.
Domestic violence cases are nothing new to James Greeley, but as a Sergeant, he couldn’t devote enough time to them.
“The problem is when you’re working the road, you can get called to any number of complaints and it can trump the time that you really want to dedicate to that case,” said now-Detective James Greeley.
He’s Waldo County’s newest Domestic Violence Detective – a full-time position the Sheriff says is a necessity.
It comes on behalf of a grant – one of two they were awarded last year that can support victims.
“This area, particularly, has transportation issues, housing issues and child care issues which affect everybody. But they affect victims of domestic violence in a very special way,” said the New Hope for Women legal advocate, Eleanor Hutchinson.
“They don’t have money to go to a hotel. They don’t have money for diapers and formula and food for kids. This grant allows us to help them with all those emergency needs so they can focus on getting away from the abuser and not worry about how the kids are gonna eat,” said Waldo County Sheriff Jeffrey Trafton.
Another benefit of a full-time investigator – now Greeley will be taking over the 48 hour follow-up in a case.
“We all know how you can have something happen significant in your life, and then six months from now it kind of dulls because maybe there’s something else that comes up. And when you have the chance to jump on something fresh like that and stay with it, it makes a big, big difference,” said Greeley.
A familiar face is important in a domestic violence investigation and with the addition of the position, the Sheriff’s Office now has that.
“Victims require attention. There’s a lot of evidence collection that needs to happen and patrol deputies just don’t have the time because they have to go from call to call to call,” said Trafton.
Trafton says he’ll have to apply for the federal grant again – but he’s confident the department will be able to keep Greeley’s position in the future.