Vernon County Sheriff John B. Spears would like to let the citizens of Vernon County know that in conjunction with the Driftless Humane Society, K9 Officer Deputy Mark Bellacero was sent to the Wisconsin Humane Officers Training course, which was held in Madison, Wisconsin on September 23rd thru 27th, 2019.  This course was provided by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer protection, and the Law Enforcement Training Institute.  Topics covered, Officers were taught a systematic approach to investigating animal cruelty complaints including: the role of the Animal Investigator, Rules of Evidence, Rules of Search and Seizure, Civil Liability, Wisconsin law, Facility standards, Evaluation of cruelty, nutrition, body conditioning and scoring, pet shop investigations, photography and sketching, crime scene procedures and collection of evidence, interview and interrogation, report writing, court room testimony, crisis intervention and officer safety.  It is the goal of the Vernon County Sheriff’s Office to be more knowledgeable in the area of Animal neglect and/ or Cruelty, and to have more officers trained in this area.  Sheriff John B. Spears would like to thank the Driftless Humane Society for their dedication and willingness to sponsor officers for this training very important training.

Currently the Sheriff’s Office has three Deputy Sheriff’s trained as Humane Officers for Vernon County.  Deputy Eric Tollackson and Part-time Deputy Phil Welch, they received the training in 2014 and now Deputy Mark Bellacero in 2019.