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Sunday May 29th, 2016 1:37PM

Hall County Sheriff announces seven promotions

By Derreck Booth Anchor/reporter
GAINESVILLE - Hall County Sheriff Gerald Couch announced seven promotions within the department Thursday, two of which are new positions.

Couch said the new posts are part of plans to expand community outreach efforts. He said they were made possible by reorganization in other divisions.

"With the re-allocations of these positions, we're managing our existing personnel to best fit the needs of the community and the sheriff's office, as opposed to just adding personnel and cost," Couch said.

Deputy Chad Mann was appointed to the new position of Community Service Officer. Mann started with the department last year after working with the Troup County Sheriff's Office.

According to Couch, the job entails service as the front lobby representative at the department's Main Street office. He's also be tapped to expand crime prevention and education efforts and serve as another public information officer.

Tamara Smith was promoted to Community Service Clerk, also a new position. She will also help handle customer service work for walk-ins at the office, according to the sheriff.

Couch announced five other promotions Thursday to positions already in existence within the department.

"These officers are of the caliber that will help us, as an agency, deliver the highest level of professional law enforcement services to our community," Couch said.

Investigator Dan Franklin was promoted to Internal Affairs Sergeant for the Enforcement Bureau. Franklin has served with the department since 1996, working as a jail officer and patrolman before being promoted to Investigator in 2000.

Deputy Kevin Sullens, previously school resource officer at West Hall High School, was promoted to investigator. Sullens joined the department in 2008.

Deputy Ben Williams was appointed to Sullens' previous post at West Hall High School. He served in that same job between 2005 and 2008. He also served in uniform patrol, became an SRO/K-9 handler and continues to work on the department's SWAT team.

Deputy Chris Alford was appointed school resource officer for East Hall Middle School. Alford joined the department in 2007, serving in the jail, patrol and on the SERT team for the jail.

Deputy Lane Acrey was appointed to the training division, after serving in court services since 2008. Acrey joined the sheriff's office after retiring from Gainesville Police in 2007 with 25 years of service.
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