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Leadership ~ Experience ~ Integrity

Of the People, For the People.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 19, 2020

Letter to the Editor

Franklin County Sheriff Nichols

My friends,

 

I am the same person today as I was eight years ago when I became your Sheriff, as I was 12 years ago when I became a Police Chief, as I was 16 years ago when I went to serve in Iraq, as I was 36 years ago when I became a Maine State Trooper assigned to Franklin County, as I was 41 years ago when I joined the United States Army and took the same oath to protect and defend.

 

As a law enforcement officer, there is nothing more important than the truth, regardless of how that truth may impact you personally.  One of the most thrown around words in law enforcement is “Integrity.”  Every police officer can give you the rote definition taught in police academy which generally is reiterated as “Doing the right thing, even when no one is watching.”  Your Sheriff, your Sheriff’s Administration and the individual Deputies and Corrections Officers who work at Franklin County are continually held to the highest standards of personal integrity; not only by the leadership but also one another. 

 

Telling the truth can never be more important than when relaying information to the public as the public depends on the honesty and “integrity” of the police to make informed decisions.  My Administration and I have worked diligently to provide the public with accurate information from the day I was sworn into office.  That goes from the daily reports, to the press releases, to the responses to requests for information and the information provided in this re-election campaign. 


We live in an age where the amount of information, both good and bad, true, and untrue, goads for our attention.  This seems especially true when candidates are running for public office.  We see candidates vying for your votes by presenting information as truth.  Sometimes it is, sometimes it is not.  Sometimes it is opinion and not facts.  Candidates for office, especially candidates running for elected police positions, like Sheriff, should never knowingly or intentionally mislead the public with faulty, incorrect or opinionated information or portray information to be factual when the research has not been done to investigate the facts.  Every police officer learns early in their career that when we investigate a crime, we must not become emotionally involved in the case and we must look at all the

facts, from both sides (i.e. the victim and the alleged perpetrator).  We must collect the information and then present that information as a case to be prosecuted or not.  It would be remarkable if candidates running for office would follow that same notion.

 

In this Sheriff’s election we have found ourselves inundated with misinformation often veiled as the sharing of an opinion.  Everyone has a right to their opinion, but public officials and those seeking public office should ensure that their “opinion” is based in facts.  In the past couple of months, we have seen that just has not been the case.  Whether a candidate is simply careless in presenting information or if they are intentionally maligning information to create doubt and fear it shows their willingness to do and say anything to portray themselves as a viable candidate. 

This Administration is doing all we can to correct the misinformation being spread.  There are days it seems we are entrenched in the Battle of the Somme, blood and mud being slung violently, with no concern for anything, certainly no concern for truth.  If a candidate cannot be trusted to be honest in the information they are providing to the public during an election, how can anyone trust them to provide accurate and truthful information after they are elected and in power? 


As part of the honesty, openness and transparency of myself and my office, we created and included a ‘Fact Checker’ section on our campaign website. Here we present factual information as a response to the misinformation being provided on public forums.

We will continue to update this page as more misinformation is discovered. Please take a moment to read through this list to learn more about your Sheriff’s Office and county government:

  • Age limits for serving Sheriffs

  • Filling open shifts and gaps in coverage for Franklin County residents

  • The ‘call-sharing’ agreement with the Maine State Police

  • The myth of slow response times to calls

  • The high turn-over rate in local law enforcement

  • Ensuring employees feel safe and supported

  • Investigating fatal accidents

  • National accreditation of the Sheriff’s Office

  • Patrol visibility, overall trust, and professionalism of the Sheriff’s Office

  • Leadership and vision

  • Crime and drug use

  • Employee recognition

  • The office of Sheriff

  • Nepotism

  • Fiscal responsibility

  • The words ‘Preferred Candidate’ appearing on your ballot

  • The FSCO K9 program

  • An additional patrol (tenth) position for the Unorganized Territories

  • The Basic Firearms and Safety Training classes

  • Handling personnel complaints

  • Employee retention

When I originally ran for the position of Sheriff, I did so at the urgent request of many of the members of the organization. They knew that their Sheriff’s Office needed substantial reorganization.  Knowing the people who worked there possessed abilities far and above what they were being allowed to use, I threw my hat into the ring.  Running for Sheriff was never about me or my ego or simply because I wanted to be Sheriff; it was about the employees and the citizens of Franklin County.  I continue with the same mindset today.

 

As a leader, one must be able to attract and retain an excellent administrative team. I have done that. This also illustrates my management grounding in guiding substantial responsibility

and providing services.  Good people are critical to an organization.  We have some of the very best. Period.

 

On a final note, I want to take a moment to address some of the things that are being said about me online that are untrue. People I have never met, or do not know me, are trying to define who I am, my character, and what I have been doing as your Sheriff for the past eight years and in law enforcement for the past 36 years.

In closing, I would like to thank the overwhelming county-wide support of this campaign. For those who may be undecided – I ask for your vote. Your Sheriff, the Sheriff’s Office administration, Deputies, Jail Administration, Corrections Officers and all of the supporting staff have worked hard over the last eight years to correct many years of neglect and to ensure that we are running the most professional and top-notch law enforcement agency and jail ever.

 

As we look to the future we do so with one point of view: to continue to provide the very best services possible that protect your physical wellbeing, civil rights and property, while ever mindful that budget increases mean property tax increases.

 

Respectfully,

Sheriff Scott Nichols

 

*Additional patrol position public information:

http://www.dailybulldog.com/db/features/sheriff-proposes-unorganized-territories-deputy/

http://www.dailybulldog.com/db/features/commissioners-mull-county-animal-control-officer/

http://www.dailybulldog.com/db/features/commissioners-approve-u-t-budget-send-it-to-the-state/

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