“There’s no such thing as a typical day when you’re in law enforcement,” said Clermont County Sheriff’s Office Sergeant Jeff Sellars.
The 17-year veteran of the force is one of 35 deputies assigned to work 12 hour shifts patrolling Clermont County roadways. “One minute there’s a crash, then you could be called to serve a warrant, take part in a drug bust, or check an overloaded truck, like I’m about to do.”
Sgt. Sellars recognized the truck and its questionable load; he had pulled the driver over only last week for the same thing.
"All my training just kicked in, I dove into the water, and was able to get the driver out," he said. Sgt. Sellars had to retrieve bolt cutters from his squad car to free the man from the sinking car; the man had handcuffed himself to the steering wheel. "I never say I've seen it all, because the next day there is something new."
There have been a lot of changes since his first day on the job.
"This is the heart and soul of our operation," Sgt. Sellars said pointing to his squad car computer. "Because of this technology in our cars, we can quickly check license plates, file paperwork, and let dispatch know where we are at all times."
He said their radar is quite accurate and can clock cars coming and going; his dashboard also sports a GPS to quickly navigate and find newer county roadways.
"We are seeing an increasing number of meth arrests locally....again," said the sergeant. Through August of 2010, there have been 47 arrests in the county, compared to 27 for all of 2009.
Another disturbing trend he is seeing involves young people who disrespect law enforcement. "Some of them actually turn up their radios when they see us approaching."
Making the transition from Sgt. Sellars to citizen Sellars is sometimes difficult.
"We see some pretty horrible things. We are human; these abuse and other cases do have an impact on us. All we can do is to help the victims as best we can. I go home many nights, thankful and appreciative of what I have," he said quietly.
What is the best part of the job? "It happened just the other day," he said. "There was an elderly lady who was taking her grandchildren to church when they got a flat tire. I fixed it; she gave me a big hug. That was nice."