Spence said he believes he will bring an important virtue if elected as sheriff: accountability. While serving with MISSION Spence investigated other sheriff agencies in their internal investigations for several years — a job he says is necessary, though many don’t want to do it.

“Those investigations are important for our profession,” he said. “If there are things like misconduct they need to be dealt with, and they need to be held accountable so we can keep our professions the way they should be.”

St. Joseph County Sheriff Mark Lillywhite was sentenced to 12 months probation, ordered to pay more than $1,000 in fines, and will have his concealed pistol permit revoked after pleading guilty Monday in Kalamazoo County Eighth District Court to operating while intoxicated, and carrying a concealed weapon while under the influence.

St. Joseph County Sheriff Mark Lillywhite was arrested in the early morning hours of Sunday, February 26 following a two-vehicle crash in Schoolcraft Township, according to the Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Office. Lillywhite is expected to be arraigned on charges of operating while intoxicated and possession of a firearm while intoxicated.

Deputies from the St. Joseph County Sheriff’s Department (SJCSD) are investigating a vehicle-pedestrian incident that occurred early Wednesday morning in Nottawa Township. According to a press release by Sheriff Mark A. Lillywhite, the incident occurred on Shimmel Road near Timm Road at approximately 5:50 a.m., when a pedestrian walking southbound on Shimmel Road was struck by a northbound pickup truck. The truck continued on after the collision without stopping.

A 39-year-old man was transported by Air Care to an area hospital after an accident in Colon Township this past Saturday morning. According to a press release by St. Joseph County Sheriff Mark Lillywhite, Deputies responded at about 7:23 a.m. to a location near Burr Oak Road and West Palmer Lake Road. Craig Holman of Angola, Indiana had crossed the center line of the road, left the roadway to his left, and struck a series of trees.

Despite reduced utilization of services and fewer funding dollars from some sources, St. Joseph County’s offender rehabilitation programs are adapting and continuing to serve. Community Corrections Director Rose Ludwick, District Court Judge Jeffrey C. Middleton, and others discussed current challenges and opportunities and approved changes at a Community Corrections Advisory Board (CCAB) meeting Wednesday.

St. Joseph County Sheriff Mark Lillywhite told Watershed Voice Wednesday that his department will not be able to enforce a directive issued last Friday prohibiting open carry of firearms within 100 feet of polling places around the state. Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson issued the directive, which applies to the upcoming November 3 General Election day, and includes instructions for local clerks on how to carry it out.

Deputies with the St. Joseph County Sheriff’s Department (SJCSD) engaged in a vehicle pursuit Friday morning that ended in the arrest of one person and an ongoing search for another. Deputies attempted a traffic stop on a maroon Ford F-150 pickup truck at approximately 8:10 a.m. for a speeding infraction, according to a press release by Sheriff Mark A. Lillywhite. The vehicle was found to have been stolen, and Deputies believe another stolen vehicle may be related.