“All employees are, to the extent possible, exercising social distancing and avoiding unnecessary contacts with citizens and groups unless it is essential do so, but proactive engagements and response to emergency and routine calls for service are conducted regularly,” said Siskiyou County Sheriff Jon Lopey.
Although dispatch services are continuing through the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office as normal, the main office at 305 Butte Street in Yreka has shut its front door in response to COVID-19 isolation guidelines.
Patrol, jail, court, and specialized functions normally performed by the Sheriff’s Office have been minimally impacted by the COVID-19 emergency, said Siskiyou County Sheriff Jon Lopey, although they’re working under policies that safeguard employees who engage in direct contact with the public.
“All employees are, to the extent possible, exercising social distancing and avoiding unnecessary contacts with citizens and groups unless it is essential do so, but proactive engagements and response to emergency and routine calls for service are conducted regularly,” Lopey said.
Some of the changes are listed below:
• Dispatch services have been maintained at normal levels but the public is urged to use the emergency 911 system only for emergencies and not for routine calls.
The regular phone number for the Sheriff’s 24-hour Dispatch Center is (530) 841-2900.
• Jail functions are operating normally, but safeguards have been implemented to screen incoming inmates and the jail’s Day Reporting Center, which conducts daily alternate sentencing programs has been closed until April 20. Inmates assigned to the DRC are advised to call in as directed by DRC supervisors and to monitor the ongoing status of the center.
• Court appearances, jury trials, and several other court activities have been suspended or delayed but citizens subject to court appearances or other deadlines should check with the Siskiyou County Superior Court to clarify whether their cases have been continued or delayed. The Sheriff’s court team is still fully operational but court hours have been reduced as a result of the COVID-19 emergency, based on guidance from the California Supreme Court’s Chief Justice.
• Normal drug task force and criminal investigative activities are ongoing with minimal restrictions but some protective measures have been implemented to reduce non-essential contacts with the public. The public is still urged to contact the Sheriff’s Office if they have any concerns about drug-related activities in their neighborhoods of if they have any information pertaining to ongoing criminal investigations.
• The renewal of concealed weapons permits has been suspended, but a 90-day extension has been granted in writing to all citizens facing the expiration of their CCW permit. Contact the Sheriff’s office and a letter signed by Sheriff Lopey will be provided in person or mailed during this interim period, certifying the extension of the CCW permit, if applicable.
• Enforcement of eviction orders has been suspended until further notice. This is a measure that has been imposed to help safeguard employees and the public. The enforcement of eviction orders will resume as soon as possible, but this suspension of action will be contingent on the threat posed by the public and to departmental employees related to the COVID-19 virus. This is generally the case in most counties recently surveyed by the department.
Lopey pointed out the everyone is working together to mitigate the ongoing COVID-19 emergency.
“I would like to emphasize the point that the coordination and cooperation between agencies at all levels has been extraordinary. I would also like to thank our citizens for their cooperation, patience, and support during this challenging period of uncertainty.”
Lopey also commended commend Siskiyou County citizens, essential services workers, and public servants for their “exceptional efforts during this crisis.”
“Our citizens deserve our gratitude for following recommendations and mandates disseminated by various officials at all levels of government, including social distancing, avoidance of crowds when practical, washing of hands, avoidance of unnecessary trips and gatherings, suspension of non-essential services, complying with quarantine measures, staying at home when sick, consulting health care professionals if symptoms occur, using disinfectants, hand sanitizers, and other measures and for being so supportive to first responders and others working in the public sector,” Lopey said.
Questions may be directed to (530) 842-8300 or the Sheriff’s 24-hour Dispatch Center at (530) 841-2900, for routine (non-emergency) calls for service or inquiries after-hours. If an emergency exists citizens should dial 911.