SWEETWATER COUNTY — Sweetwater County Sheriff Mike Lowell announced on Friday his candidacy for a second term.
Lowell was first elected sheriff in 2014. Prior to that, he was chief of the Rock Springs Police Department for 12 years and served a total of 32 years with that agency, rising through the ranks. He has a bachelor of arts degree in history and an associate degree in liberal arts with an emphasis in criminal justice.
Lowell served with the U.S. Marine Corps both on active duty and as a member of the Marine Corps Reserve. He and his wife Virginia have six children and 14 grandchildren, with another on the way.
Lowell credits the hard work and professionalism of the men and women of the Sheriff’s Office in working with him as a team to:
• Implement a reorganization of the Sheriff’s Office based on merit, achievement, and leadership;
• Upgrade Sheriff’s Office technology to keep pace with ever-increasing public safety and criminal justice system needs;
• Increase patrols and improve services in the largest county in Wyoming. In 2017, the Sheriff’s Office logged over 23,000 public safety emergency services, law enforcement, and detention center tasks, contacts and assignments, including calls for service, criminal investigations, sex offender checks, prisoner transports, arrests, citations, traffic stops and crashes, motorist assists, building checks, property watches, welfare checks, alarms, fires, 911 calls and animal calls. This is an increase of 20 percent over the previous year;
• Foster merit-based hiring and promotion practices;
• Maintain an efficient, legally-based, constitutionally safe detention center;
• Implement the first Sweetwater County Detention Center audit;
• Streamline the communication process;
• Upgrade the Sheriff’s Office sex offender registration system and increase the frequency of face-to-face sex offender compliance checks throughout the county;
• Work diligently to maintain a high level of security for circuit and district courts;
• Take the lead in serving domestic violence, stalking and civil orders; and
• Upgrade training for patrol detective and detention personnel.
“Among my goals was creation of a special detective unit tasked with a special focus on drug enforcement and fugitive apprehension and building effective K-9 teams. Early in my first year, our Sheriff’s Narcotics and Arrest Group (SNAAG) commenced operations and its first week made 13 arrests. Since then, the SNAAG team has been involved in over 400 arrests and fugitive apprehensions on charges including drug trafficking, felony drug possession, drug manufacture, conspiracy, homicide, aggravated homicide by vehicle, probation violation, burglary, auto theft, forgery, kidnapping, aggravated assault and battery, domestic battery, strangulation of a household member, interstate flight, weapons violations, felony theft, prostitution, soliciting and escape. In many instances, fugitives wanted in Sweetwater County were tracked to and captured in Idaho, Colorado, Utah, Montana, and as far away as Kentucky, Florida and Alaska,” he said in a press release.
“Over time, we assembled our K-9 teams and provided them the extensive training required for general patrol work and drug interdiction. The results speak for themselves: Since October 2017 alone, our K-9 units have made 19 felony drug arrests and seized over half a ton of marijuana, liquid marijuana, dab (marijuana wax), heroin, and methamphetamine with a street value of well over $5 million.”
Among Lowell’s professional and civic affiliations are the National Sheriff’s Association, the Wyoming Association of Sheriffs and Chiefs of Police, International Association of Chiefs of Police, National Rifle Association, American Legion (life member), USMC Heritage Foundation, National Museum of the Marine Corps (founding member), and Governor’s Task Force on School Safety and Security.
The campaign’s Facebook page can be found at facebook.com/ReElectSheriffMikeLowell. A campaign website is under construction and will go live in the near future. To reach the campaign staff, email [email protected]
“My message for the people of Sweetwater County is this: To judge our level of success and accomplishments over the past three years, just check the record,” Lowell said. “It has been an honor and a privilege to serve as your sheriff, and I would welcome the opportunity to continue leading the committed professionals of the Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office in their most important duty — protection what you value most.”