Riding the storm out, changing of the guard


Evening Snapshots

Above: Coronavirus what? Alexandria Schulz, right, of Brooklyn, and her friend Marc Vivian of Willis took advantage of nice weather Thursday to take a bike ride into Brooklyn. The town was busy with people taking walks and working in their yards, but the streets remained eerily quiet. Earlier in the day, Governor Whitmer cancelled the remainder of the school year.

Changing of the Guard

Columbia Township Police Chief David Elwell, right, is handing the reigns of the department over to Sgt. Jay Niles, left.

Friday, April 3 is Columbia Township Police Chief David Elwell’s last day on the job. Elwell is giving up the post to take a run at Jackson County Sheriff.

Taking his place on an interim basis is Sgt. Jay Niles. “Everything should go smoothly,” predicts Niles, who has been with the department for 18 years. Niles said his first order of business during the ongoing coronavirus scare is keeping officers healthy. “We will still have 24-7 service, but we just want to limit contact with the public,” said Niles.

Elwell, who lives in Blackman Township, will begin campaigning as soon as he leaves. Besides police work, Elwell has served nine terms as a county commissioner.

As for Niles, he would like to see the “interim” removed from his title, and has informed township officials that he is available for the job.

It ain’t the Berlin Wall….

It may not look like much, but visitors to the Columbia Township Police Department get the point: No driving down the hall! The pylon barrier, dubbed “Elwell’s Wall” keeps people from wandering off when visiting the police station.

Speaking of ambitions for sheriff…

Lenawee County Sheriff Troy Bevier has announced his official candidacy for reelection.

Bevier, a Napoleon native, was appointed to the position on March 1, 2019, succeeding Jack Welsh. Welsh endorsed the selection of then Undersheriff Bevier to finish out Welsh’s term, which ends this year.

Our message to the community: “We will all come out of this stronger than ever.”

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