Captain Charisse Rivers, Chief over the Criminal Investigations Bureau at the Walton County Sheriff’s Office (WCSO) recently graduated as a part of the 129th Administrative Officers Course (AOC) at Southern Police Institute (SPI). The SPI is located at the University of Louisville in Louisville, KY. The AOC is an in-residence, accredited college level program that lasts for 12 weeks and is designed to develop informed, effective, ethically and technically competent law enforcement managers who are capable of assuming positions of leadership in their respective agencies. Officers from all over the United States, as well as from countries such as Turkey, attended the course. According to the Southern Police Institute, the diversity of class members “ensures that class members will leave the Southern Police Institute with a network of graduates that will provide an outstanding resource from which they can seek assistance for organizational problems throughout their careers.” The motto of the 129th Administrative Officer’s Course was “Ancora Imparo”. This translates various ways, but really means, “And Still, We Learn”.
Along with the education Captain Rivers received from the SPI, she brings experience in the law enforcement which began at the Ft. Walton Beach Police Department as an auxiliary officer while working full-time at Eglin Air Force Base in Range Patrol and Security Police Investigations. She worked as a patrol deputy with both the Collier and Hendry County Sheriff’s Offices before transferring to the Walton County Sheriff’s Office (WCSO) in 1997. In 1998, Captain Rivers was promoted to investigator and spent the next several years investigating crimes against persons. She later became a sergeant. Captain Rivers was promoted to lieutenant in 2009 and served as the Agency’s accreditation manager, leading to the successful accreditation of the WCSO. Rivers was promoted in October 2012 to Captain of the Criminal Investigations Bureau.
Captain Rivers has accumulated over 2,500 hours of law enforcement and management training, and she earned an Associate of Science degree in Criminal Justice from Okaloosa-Walton Community College.
“This course was an extremely positive and challenging experience,” Rivers said. “The lessons I learned and the people I met positively impacted my life. Overall, I believe the class will certainly enhance my future performance as a leader.”
Yesterday, Sheriff Adkinson met with the three winners of the 1st Annual Family Fun Art Contest. Jonathan Clenney, Molly Rausenberger and McKenna Rausenberger were awarded with a $25 gift card to Blast Arcade along with a gift card for free ice cream at Moo La La Ice Cream Store, both located in Baytowne Wharf. The winners also met the Sheriff and had their photos made with him. Blast Arcade was the sponsor of this year’s event and their representative, Kitty Whitney, was also present to meet with the children.
Jonathan Clenney was awarded as overall winner and will have his artwork created into a poster that will hang in all of the Walton County Sheriff’s Office substations. Jonathan attends West DeFuniak Elementary in DeFuniak Springs.
The contest was held during the month of April, commonly recognized as Child Abuse Prevention Month. Children were asked to create artwork depicting their favorite family activity. Jonathan chose fishing, while Molly chose “taking a nature walk” and McKenna chose “fishing”.
Deputies and investigators with the Walton County Sheriff’s Office (WCSO) have been hot on the trail of the suspects involved in a string of burglaries occurring in the Driftwood Estates area in South Walton. Yesterday, deputies responded to 901 East Mack Bayou in reference to a suspicious persons call. An elderly neighbor made contact with two male individuals in her neighbor’s yard who were hanging around a window at the back of the house. They quickly fled after the neighbor spoke to them.
Law enforcement and the owner of the residence were contacted and deputies found an open window, as well as a damaged window screen. Deputies were able to locate subjects, Miguel Arceo, 16 of Santa Rosa Beach and Thomas Howells, 22, of Santa Rosa Beach. After gathering more information during the investigation, both were arrested and charged with Burglary of a Structure and Criminal Mischief.
The two have also been linked to several other burglaries in the Driftwood Estates area. Howells has additionally been charged with one count of Felony Criminal Mischief, one count of Grand Theft, two counts of Burglary, one count of Dealing in Stolen Property, one count of Grand Theft of a Firearm and one count of Grand Theft from the Elderly. Arceo has been charged with one count of Felony Criminal Mischief, one count of Grand Theft, one count of Grand Theft from the Elderly, one count of Grand Theft of a Firearm, and two counts of Burglary.
Both were transported for booking to the Walton County Department of Corrections. Arceo was subsequently transported to the Department of Juvenile Justice Detention Center in Crestview. This continues to be an active investigation.