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Hancock police officers' jurisdiction is expanded

July 12, 2003|by TARA REILLY

The Hancock Town Council has approved an agreement with the Washington County Sheriff's Department that gives the town's four police officers law enforcement jurisdiction outside town limits.

Town officers already assist the Sheriff's Department on calls outside the town, but they cannot make arrests, officials said.

Hancock Police Chief Donald Gossage said the action, taken Wednesday, will clear up confusion over jurisdiction.

A few incidents have occurred near Hancock's borders, but those cases have been dismissed in court because of concerns over which law enforcement agency had jurisdiction, Gossage said.

Sheriff Charles F. Mades has said he has never deputized a town officer since he became sheriff in 1986, but members of the Narcotics Task Force are given the deputy designation so they can work throughout the county and make drug arrests.

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