VALEAC Treasurer now Lynchburg City Sheriff


Sheriff Don Sloan is a 1976 graduate of Central Linn High School in Halsey, Oregon.  He came to Lynchburg in January of 1978 to attend Liberty Baptist College. He began working with the campus safety department in October of 1979 and worked his way through the ranks to Chief of Police for Liberty University Police Department, serving as Chief from October 1997 through December 2001.  During his tenure with Liberty University Police Department, Don earned his Bachelor of Science and two Master’s degrees.  Don also met the love of his life, his wife Carla, at Liberty University, and they were married in July 1984. They have been married for 32 years and have one son, John-Wesley Sloan, who is a sophomore at Liberty University.  Don and his family are long time members of Thomas Road Baptist Church.

In January of 2002, Don accepted the appointed position of Chief Deputy Sheriff for the City of Lynchburg Sheriff’s Office with Sheriff Ron Gillispie.  Don has served the citizens of Lynchburg in this highest appointed position for the Lynchburg Sheriff’s Office for the past 15 plus years.

He was instrumental in overseeing and leading the sheriff’s office through the Virginia Law Enforcement Professional Standards Commission Accreditation process, earning the office’s current State Accreditation beginning in November 2006, again in November 2010,and again in November 2014.

“As Sheriff of the City of Lynchburg, I will lead by example some of the finest men and women called to serve in Law Enforcement. I am a public servant of the people. Therefore, I am answerable to the people of Lynchburg as their Sheriff.”


Sheriff Sig


Congratulations to Chief Rick Arnold, the 2016 Commissioner’s Award Winner

Chief Arnold is a 39-year veteran of the Wytheville Police Department and has been involved in accreditation since 2000. He has served on many assessments and mocks as well as serving as Team Leader. He is a Master Assessor for the Virginia Law Enforcement Professional Standards Commission. Prior to becoming Chief of Police, he was the Accreditation Manager for his agency. He has served on the Standards Review Committee since 2012. His agency obtained accredited status in 2002.  The department received its fourth award in May, 2014. He has never failed to answer the call when needed to step in as team member or team leader on short notice assessments. Chief Arnold is a VALEAC Conference Instructor. He has participated in 13 official on-sites, 6 of these as team leader. Chief Arnold truly displays the character and qualities that make him a very valuable asset to VLEPSC and VALEAC.


VLEPSC Senior Assessor & Team Leader Now Chief of Police at Bridgewater College

Lieutenant Milton Franklin, Reynolds Community College Police Department Is now Chief Franklin, Bridgewater College. Congratulations Milt. Our loss is truly their gain. Please see the message from Bridgewater College.


Dear Faculty, Staff and Students 

I am pleased to announce that the College has selected its next Chief of Police and Director of Campus Safety and Emergency Management. Following an extensive search, Milton Franklin will join us as Chief on Monday, October 3. 

Many of you who met Milton during his on-campus interview would agree that his extensive background in higher education law enforcement coupled with his sincere care and compassion for our community will make him an ideal Chief of Police at BC. 

Milton is currently Police Administrative Lieutenant, Emergency Management Coordinator and Accreditation Manager for the J. Sargent Reynolds Community College Police Department. Prior to joining J. Sargent Reynolds, Milton worked in law enforcement at Virginia Commonwealth University, Old Dominion University and Virginia Tech as well as with various local police departments.  He has a B.S. from Virginia Tech and a graduate certificate in criminal justice education from University of Virginia. Milton is a graduate of the esteemed FBI National Academy in Quantico and is currently completing his M.A. in homeland security from American Military University. 

Milton will begin at the College prior to the retirement of Chief Picerno’s departure on October 14th, giving the two a chance to partner to best transition the Campus Police Department. As we say our good-byes to the great Chief Picerno and wish him well in retirement, we are confident and pleased that we have another wonderful new leader poised to take over campus safety  

Leslie Frere, Ph.D. | Student Life | Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students

With heavy hearts;

Posted by request:

It is with a heavy heart that I have to type this message.

I received a call from Sheriff Howard this morning making me aware that his father, Doctor Farrar W. Howard, Sr. had just passed away.

Doc was not in good health and of recent his condition had rapidly gone downhill.

Wakie and Mrs. Howard were present with him when Doctor Howard made his walk into heaven and that is a blessing in itself.

Our family has lost a GREAT man and this community owes this man a tremendous debt for his military service, his community service, his longtime service as a doctor and as a friend and mentor to most of us who have been in the community over the years.

New Kent and Charles City Counties have lost an unbelievably dedicated public servant and more importantly a loyal and trusted friend.

This great man of God is now sitting at the right hand of our father and he is another of our guardian angels who are watching over us and those of our communities.

Our prayers and thoughts are with the Howard family at this time and they know that we are with them all and that we are here to do whatever they ask or need.

Doctor F. W. Howard, Sr. will be memorialized on Sunday September 18, 2016 at the New Kent High School.

This service will start at 3:00 p.m.

Please keep them in your prayers.

God Bless


New Kent Sheriff’s Office

Staton Promoted to Chief Deputy of City of Salem Sheriff’s Office

Commonwealth Attorney Tom Bowers, Chief Deputy April Staton, Sheriff Ric Atkins, and Judge Charles Dorsey gather together after the ceremony.
Commonwealth Attorney Tom Bowers, Chief Deputy April Staton, Sheriff Ric Atkins, and Judge Charles Dorsey gather together after the ceremony.

April Staton was officially recognized as Salem’s new Chief Deputy Sheriff in a ceremony August 1 at the Salem’s courthouse.

Staton takes over for former Deputy Sheriff David Rorer, who retired earlier this summer.

Major Staton began her law enforcement career with the Salem Sheriff’s Office in January 2003. After completing just three years of service, she was awarded the distinction of Master Deputy Sheriff, a position recognized by the Commonwealth of Virginia for excellence in performance, training, and service. In 2008, she continued her  rise in rank to the position of Sergeant, becoming the first female to achieve such distinction for the Sheriff’s Office.

 “I like to refer to Major Staton as being dynamic. You could use every synonym of that word to describe her,” said Salem City Sheriff Ric Atkins.  “her dedication, commitment, and loyalty to the citizens she serves, as well as her fellow appointees, are beyond compromise.”

“My appreciation of this promotion is truly inexplicable,” said Staton. “I expect that what I will be able to offer to this position is a common sense style of leadership, and efficiency… to have this position after years of hard work, and determination gives me a great sense of achievement.”

Staton was joined in the ceremony by her family including parents Dennis Staton and Valerie Lewis.  She has three younger siblings that she constantly tries to model hard work for – two brothers, Jarrod and Lucas, and a sister, Atlanta.

“I always tell my siblings to work hard and listen,” she said. “That is always what I have done to get to this new chapter in my career. I look forward to being Chief Deputy, and leading this Office alongside Sheriff Atkins.”

Photo and story courtesy of The Roanoke Times



Brunswick Sheriff Brian Roberts to lead VLEPSC

Sheriff Brian Roberts presents a plaque to Chief Longo recognizing his term as Chairman of VLEPSC

The Virginia Sheriffs’ Association, the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police and the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) make up the VLEPSC. Commissioners consisting of active Sheriffs and Chiefs of Police establish professional standards and administer the accreditation process by which Virginia agencies can be systematically measured, evaluated, and updated. DCJS manages the day-to-day operations for the Commission.

The Commission’s goals include the following: To increase the effectiveness and efficiency of law enforcement agencies in the Commonwealth through the delivery of services; To promote cooperation among all components in the criminal justice system; To ensure the appropriate level of training for law enforcement personnel; To promote public confidence in law enforcement; and To promote the professionalism of law enforcement agencies in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

On May 15, 2014, Sheriff Brian Roberts assumed the Chairmanship of the Commission from Chief Timothy J. Longo, Sr.

Chief Longo said, “The VLEPSC is the mechanism by which we ensure the highest standards of professionalism for Virginia Law enforcement. I have been privileged to have had the opportunity to have served as the Commission’s Chairman these past two years, and have the distinct honor of passing the torch to one who exemplifies professionalism, competence, and commitment, the Honorable Brian Roberts. Brian’s passion for excellence, his thoughtful approach to taking on tough and oftentimes unpopular issues, has made him a valuable part of the Commission and someone who I look forward to continuing to work with in an effort to make Virginia Law Enforcement the best that it can possibly be.”

Sheriff Roberts said, “I am quite honored and humbled to be selected by my peers to be the Chairman of the Virginia Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission.  Chief Longo is one of the finest professionals I have ever met and did an excellent job leading this Commission over the past two years.  My intentions are to continue raising the bar of excellence as it relates to Law Enforcement Standards.  This program has meant so much to my Department and me personally and again, I am truly honored.”

James City police chief retires after 34 years

Chief Emmett Harmon
Chief Emmett Harmon

JAMES CITY — At the end of the year, James City County’s first full-time officer is hanging up his uniform.

Police Chief Emmett Harmon, 57, has spent 38 years in law enforcement, 34 of them with James City, and he’s credited with bringing the small department a very long way. He could have retired seven years ago, but there were things he wanted to do.

“This is the way I would prefer to go out,” he said, reflecting on the things he has accomplished during his tenure and how well the police department runs today.

Harmon said he’d had the idea of joining the force since middle school. While most departments won’t hire until age 21, Harmon said he joined up during a brief window in which Suffolk was hiring younger.

From there he moved to Newport News and finally to James City, where he became its first officer.

“When I found out that they were forming a new police department in James City County, that was really where I wanted to do police work,” he said. “That was home for me.”

He said he worked patrol, SWAT, community services and countless other jobs within the department before being named chief in 2005.

Since then the department has grown from 75 officers to 93, added a marine patrol and a dive team and taken over working its own vehicle accidents because Harmon felt the department should handle them. He also oversaw moving the police department out of cramped quarters on Route 5 to a new building in Lightfoot.

“He’s been a very effective chief,” said County Administrator Robert Middaugh. ” I think he’s built a very strong department.”

James City Fire Chief Tal Luton said Harmon has been a close personal friend and the latest in a line of great police chiefs. He said Harmon has helped build a close working relationship between the departments that he hopes will continue.

Investigator William T. Gibbs has worked with Harmon 30 years and said he knows his chief wouldn’t ask anything of him that he wouldn’t do himself.

“He’s always been what I referred to as a police officers’ chief,” he said. “…Like a good commander he’s always looked after his troops.”

Middaugh said they will begin the process of finding Harmon’s successor in the next few weeks. Harmon’s last day will be Dec. 31.

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Dumfries’ new police chief looks forward

Dumfries has a new police chief, and she plans to stay awhile. Chief Rebecca Edwards, the department's second-in-command for the past 18 months, took her new position last week when Chief Rob Forker retired.
Dumfries has a new police chief, and she plans to stay awhile. Chief Rebecca Edwards, the department’s second-in-command for the past 18 months, took her new position last week when Chief Rob Forker retired.

“I don’t have plans to go anywhere else. I think there is a lot of opportunity here. I like the town. I like the people,” Chief Rebecca Edwards said. “The police department mission will stay the same. I want the transition to be seamless. There shouldn’t be any bumps. I want to keep the same high level of services that we have had.”

“When Chief Forker was appointed chief, he let it be known there would be a limit to his tenure here,” said Dumfries Town Manager Dan Taber. Forker had already retired once from the Prince William County police Department and wanted to return to retirement.

Taber made the recommendation to the Dumfries Town Council to promote Edwards. She was approved unanimously.

“Over the past year and a half that she has been the captain of the Dumfries Police Department, she has performed in an outstanding manner. She has gained the confidence and respect of the community and the town council,” Taber said.

“There is no reason to believe she won’t continue to move the Dumfries Police Department forward in as professional a manner as possible.”

Edwards has about 25 years of law enforcement experience.

Before taking the Dumfries position, she worked for eight years at the Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office. When she left in 2011 following the election of a new sheriff, she was a major and a division commander.

“I knew being third in command, I was not going to survive a transition,” she said.

She also had worked her way up from deputy to a division commander of the town of Fishers Police Department in Indiana.

“I’ve been blessed. I have had a lot of really good opportunities and really good mentors but I’ve also worked hard,” she said.

Before applying for the Dumfries position, Edwards said she didn’t know much about the town or the controversy that plagued its police department in 2010.

Within six months of that year, the longtime police chief retired, a senior officer was fired, another senior officer resigned one day after being placed on suspension, and another officer resigned when he learned the findings of an internal investigation into the town force.

“I did know there had been quite a bit of transition and I knew in general they were rebuilding,” Edwards said.

She said she looks forward, not back.

Edwards applied for the Dumfries job, met with Forker and did her research.

“After talking to him, I could see a lot of positive changes,” Edwards said. “They were trying to do the right thing and be consistent.”

She took the job and liked what she saw in the department. Officers spent a great deal of time interacting with residents and participating in town events. The department had good equipment and the officers reflected the diversity in the town.

“They were moving forward,” she said. “I came to appreciate the officers who were here and the people in the town.

“I think we are in very good shape but I look forward to the opportunities and challenges still out there,” she said.

She wants to explore new programs and activities to continue community interaction.

Edwards also would like to see her officers acquire specialty skills and be more involved in casework aside from taking initial reports.

She wants to see the department fully staffed with 11 sworn officers.

“I want to ensure we maintain and improve,” Edwards said.

“We all are working together. We have different positions. We have different roles,” she said. “This is not Becca’s police department. The accomplishments that we will have will be as a team.”

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