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Beltrami County Sheriff's Office - Letter from the Sheriff, COVID-19

 

March 23, 2020



Beltrami County, MN -- March 20, 2020:

Dear Beltrami County Citizens,

Most of us have never experienced what is and has been happening across our communities, tribal nations, our State, our Nation and the World with the impact of COVID-19. We, as individuals, are the best line of defense to prevent its spread.

As Beltrami County Sheriff I want to reassure you that the Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office and all of our community partners are working tirelessly to make sure we are meeting the needs of the community, keeping you safe and keeping you accurately informed.

The Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Management through our Emergency Operations Center is at the center of this, collecting information from all of our Federal, State and Local partners and disseminating that information locally so our leaders are able to make informed decisions that best meet our needs.

I am so proud of all of our Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office employees and their families who have all stepped up their game, despite not knowing what tomorrow will bring, or how tomorrow will impact their families and loved ones, but continue to provide professional service to all our citizens.

Operationally the Sheriff’s Office will be making some temporary changes to comply with CDC’s and MDH’s directives/guidelines and the Governor’s Executive Orders which include:

Beltrami County Jail Division, in compliance with the Minnesota Department of Corrections, has canceled all in person visits with inmates. We will post links and directions through our website and social media on how visitations will proceed. For all those arrested and for all of our staff, we are requiring medical screening prior to entry.

Beltrami County Records Division, in compliance with CDC and MDH guidelines we are asking that you do not come to the Law Enforcement Center to conduct business personally for records or data requests. The forms are available online at the Beltrami County website (www.co.beltrami.mn.us) in the Document Center—Sheriff Department. These can be submitted by email at beltrami.records@co.beltrami.mn.us or US Mail to Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office Records Division, 613 Minnesota Ave NW, Bemidji, MN 56601. To direct dial into the records division please call 218-333-4187. Permits to purchase and carry permits will still require the individual to continue to come into the Law Enforcement Center records office with a picture ID during Records business

Beltrami County 911 Center, the heart of our Sheriff’s Office, continues to effectively and professionally field all 911, Text to 911 calls and Non-Emergency Calls for Service. For non-law enforcement questions about COVID-19 you are asked to get the most up to date information from the Center of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website at http://www.cdc.gov/ or the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) website at http://www.health.state.mn.us/.

Please only call 911 if you have an emergency. If you have a non-emergency call for service please dial our non-emergency number at 218-333-9111.

If you are seeking non-law enforcement information, as much as our Communications Officers strive to help everyone, please dial 211 or seek alternative sources to answer your question, such as the World Wide Web. Please keep in mind that non-law enforcement calls into our communications center can delay the answering of a 911 call.

Beltrami County Courthouse, in an order going into effect March 23, 2019 the court has:

• Suspended most in-person district court proceedings for the next 30 days. Exceptions include jury trials that have already commenced; grand jury proceedings in which the grand jury is currently taking evidence; and a specific list of adult criminal, juvenile delinquency, juvenile protection, and emergency matters.

• There will be limited public access to court facilities. Courtrooms are open to parties of case, attorneys, and any necessary court staff. The Clerk of Courts counter and self-help services will be limited to electronic and telephone services until further order.

• Public access to the State Law Library is closed.

• Requires that filings and submissions in pending court cases must be made electronically, or by email, mail, or by other means provided to court administration, other than at facilities in which access is necessary to access a drop-box or other available filing means, the parties and the public will not be permitted access to a court facility to submit documents for filing.

• Courtrooms and court buildings that have access to virtual courtroom technology shall use and deploy that technology as directed by the presiding judge. Court staff shall continue to process cases and case filings, working remotely if feasible and approved by court administration. (Section B, paragraph 15)

If you have a pending court date, prior to going to the courthouse you are asked to go to contact your attorney or the Minnesota Courts Website at http://www.MNcourts.gov, type in the search bar:

• Beltrami Calendar

• Click> Minnesota Judicial Branch- Beltrami County District Court

• Click> Beltrami Weekly Public Court Calendar

Beltrami County Field Operations and Investigations, has seen some minor operational changes but no changes have been made to the service of our community. We have made some minor changes to operations in the following ways:

• Our communications officers are asking additional questions from our callers.

• Understand that due to a Deputy’s contact with so many people they should

o Practice social distancing.

o Always have available and use their personal protective equipment, when appropriate.

o Sanitize their hands immediately after having contact with someone and wash their hands as soon as they can afterwards.

o Clean and sanitize their vehicles after each person comes into contact with it.

Sincerely,

Sheriff Ernie Beitel

Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office

 

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