Two Steamboat Springs Police Department patrol officers have resigned with plans to return to the Routt County Sheriff’s Office.
“As anticipated, I thought there might be some former (Sheriff’s Office deputies) who want to go back and work for the new sheriff,” Police Chief JD Hays said.
The two officers, Tom Munden and Doug Scherar, worked at the Sheriff’s Office before joining the Police Department. Munden started at the police department in January 2007 and is possibly best known for helping to deliver a baby in the chip and gum aisle at 7-Eleven in March 2007. Scherar joined the department in September 2004. Neither officer was available for comment Tuesday.
The police patrol division consists of three sergeants and 12 patrol officers. One of those positions is dedicated as the school resource officer. Another is committed to the All Crimes Enforcement Team.
The department is in the process of filling a vacant patrol position. With the departure of Munden and Scherar, the department will be down to nine patrol officers.
“We’ve been short-staffed before,” Hays said. “You have to bite the bullet for a while until we find some new people.”
Munden and Scherar are expected to start at the Sheriff’s Office in the first half of May, Hays said.
Hays said there would continue to be a minimum of two officers on call at all times. In order to do that, some officers will work overtime, he said.
It takes three to six months to hire a new officer, Hays said, and the department has already started looking for replacements.
“I’m sorry they’re leaving us,” Sgt. Rich Brown said. “I’m glad they’re going to be around the area, and the community will still benefit from their service.”
Routt County Sheriff Garrett Wiggins was unavailable for comment Tuesday.
Hays said Scherar is taking a sergeant position and Munden will be a patrol deputy.
— To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247 or email mstensland@SteamboatToday.com