SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY, California – With over 30 years with the department, you could playfully say that San Bernardino County has a not-so-new sheriff in town.
San Bernardino County Sheriff Shannon Dicus will lead the department for the remaining 18 months to be served by the now retired Sheriff John McMahon. Dicus’ promotion was unanimously approved by the supervisory board, which wanted as much stability as possible during the transition.
With decades of service to San Bernardino County, Sheriff Dicus comes with a lot of support from the staff. He’s also ready to pursue some of McMahon’s goals, like updating some of the department’s infrastructure and getting body cameras for MPs.
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As Deputy Sheriff, he oversaw day-to-day departmental operations and several divisions, including internal affairs, civil liability and the administration office. In its request, Dicus included fairness as one of the pressing areas facing the ministry.
Sitting with us, he explained that he didn’t want to wait until the sheriff’s department was mandated to do something, but that he preferred to look for ways to do the right thing before being told to do it.
Newly released inmates were of particular concern. He plans to lobby for more resources that could help newly released inmates. He describes recidivism as a major obstacle to reducing crime.
He promises to hire more officers, at least 13 of them. Even with that, the SB County Sheriff covers a county that is geographically the largest in the country: 2.1 million people – with about 3,900 employees spread across eight counties and 14 contract patrol stations.
He says he supports the use of body worn cameras. The county budget approved in June includes more than $ 5 million to establish the body camera implementation program, but it is still in the process of being tendered.
Dicus plans to run next June, when county residents vote to decide who will serve as sheriff for a four-year term, starting in January 2023.
On a personal note, he took over the riding heritage that was an important part of a department associated with the Wild West, but he actually comes from the world of horseback riding with a different kind of power. As a former motocross rider, he is heavily involved in what is known as dual sport motorcycles, which are off-road motorcycles legal on the roads.
But he says he enjoys four-legged horses, and you can see him at this year’s San Bernardino County Sheriff’s PRCA Rodeo, which takes place the weekend of September 24-26 in Glen Helen. Tickets are already available.