YORK — York County Sheriffs Detective Kelly Lovelace spent years busting meth labs and seizing pot plants as a drug unit commander. Now, shes staving off shoplifters, burglars and arsonists as a property crimes detective.
But on Tuesday afternoon, along with 160 other deputies employed in the constitutional office, Lovelace, 48, raised her right hand and recited an oath. Hundreds of deputies gathered at the law enforcement training center in York to be sworn in at the onset of Sheriff Bruce Bryants fifth elected term.
Its saying, Hey, youre doing a good job, and were going to keep you on, Bryant said about the ceremony that he said would rehire 163 deputies.
Its an honor working with this agency, said Lovelace, the offices second female lieutenant and a 20-year law enforcement veteran. Her mother, former Lt. Betty Carroll, retired as the offices first female lieutenant.
Because of employees honesty, integrity and love of God ... I couldnt imagine working anywhere else, Lovelace said.
Neither could Lt. David Frye, 47, who spent the last 28 years working under four different sheriffs. He started as a dispatcher before he moved to the uniform patrol division, spent 12 years in property crimes and worked on the night shift as a patrol lieutenant before heading the offices Rock Hill district.
If your hearts in it, its always in it, he said.
Both Lovelace and Frye recalled difficult times in their law enforcement career, including Lovelace rescuing one of two boys who drowned in the Catawba River and Frye working the night York County deputy Brent McCants was killed.
Just the mere fact that youre sitting here speaks volumes about your character, Bryant told deputies. You should never underestimate the power you have.
Bryant said there are 326 employees with the Sheriffs Office. The deputies sworn in on Tuesday, he said, were Class I deputies, which include patrol deputies, detectives and employees entrusted with the power to make an arrest.
Class II deputies, detention center officers, will be sworn in next week, he said.
Jonathan McFadden 803-329-4082