Community briefs for July 21, 2022
Fort Bend County Sheriff Eric Fagan announced the promotions of eight sheriff’s deputies at a July 7 promotion ceremony at the Gus George Law Enforcement Academy in Richmond. The deputies emerged as the top scorers in a civil service test for sergeant positions.
“These deputies have advanced progressively through the ranks and are well respected by their peers and the communities in which they protect and serve,” Fagan said. “I extend my heartiest congratulations to these officers and their families and thank them for their service.”
Deputies with their new rank are as follows:
Sgt. Brooks Cash started with the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office in 2010 after beginning his law enforcement career two years earlier with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. In 2011, he graduated from the University of Houston Downtown Police Academy. Cash has served Fort Bend County for eight years in the patrol division and four years in the Fort Bend County Jail as a field training officer, where he trains new correctional officers and deputies beginning their law enforcement career. Cash was pinned by his wife, Lydia.
Sgt. Colin Godmintz started his career as a patrol deputy at the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office in 2016. In 2019, he joined the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office as a patrol deputy and later transferred to the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT). Godmintz has been a CIT instructor and has taught both cadets and peace officers at the Gus George Law Enforcement Academy. He was involved in the planning of the creation of the academy’s de-escalation class. Godmintz has been awarded the NAMI Greater Houston CIT Deputy of the Quarter twice since being assigned to CIT. He also holds the certifications of basic instructor and mental health peace officer. He was pinned by his wife, Dixie.
Sgt. Justin Harris has been an employee of the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office for over 18 years. He began his career in 2003 as a civilian jailer and graduated in 2005 from the Wharton County Junior College Police Academy. In 2008, Harris transferred to the inmate transport division in the fugitive/warrants department where he worked until 2010. He has spent the last dozen years in the criminal investigations division where he worked in family violence for two years, special crimes for eight years, misdemeanors for one year, and fraud since early 2022. Harris was pinned by his wife, Mary Ann.
Sgt. Raybon William Hastedt IV attended Texas A&M University and was a member of the Corps of Cadets. While enrolled at the university, Sgt. Hastedt joined the U.S. Army and completed two deployments in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. He began his career in law enforcement after graduating from the Gus George Law Enforcement Academy in 2009 (Class #24). He was assigned to the Patrol Division where he became a field training officer tasked with the responsibility of developing prospective patrol deputies. Sgt. Hastedt holds a Master Peace Officer certification as well as a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice administration. He was pinned by his wife, Christina.
Sgt. Jesus Quiroz began his law enforcement career with the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office in December 2017. He is a graduate of the Wharton County Junior College Police Academy. Quiroz is currently assigned to the Detention Division. He was pinned his fiancée, Rebecca.
Sgt. David Rivera is a 2002 graduate of Lamar Consolidated High School in Rosenberg and is a 2006 graduate of the Gus George Law Enforcement Academy (Class #21). He currently holds an advanced peace officer certification from the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement. Rivera holds certifications as a mental health officer, field training officer, and basic instructor. Most recently, Rivera served as a contract deputy in the Big Oaks community. He was pinned by his son, David.
Sgt. Charles Willeby attended and graduated in 2013 from the Gus George Law Enforcement Academy. He started with the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office in the jail in 2013. In 2014, Willeby left to work with the Fort Bend County Precinct 1 Constable, working in the Civil and Patrol divisions. He returned to the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office in 2015 and worked in the Patrol Division until 2019 when he was promoted to detective. He worked Misdemeanors for a few months and moved to the robbery/homicide division where he remains today. Willeby has received multiple commendations for his work on murder/robbery investigations, including Officer of the Year. He was pinned by his wife, Laura.
Sgt. Joshua Wright served at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice for four and a half years before graduating the Wharton County Junior College Police Academy in 2011. Wright served for three and a half years at the Sweeny Police Department. From there he went on to work at the Fort Bend County Pct. 3 Constable’s Office before joining the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office in 2016. Wright was unavailable for the pinning ceremony.
The Katy Area Chamber of Commerce has created a program for community members focusing on personal and political preparation for a future career as an elected official and community leader.
The three-part program provides the opportunity to learn from and interact with former politicians and community leaders, as well as prominent campaign executives.
The program is free from political affiliations and provides an in-depth learning environment where potential candidates for elected office, as well as those interested in the process, can learn the key components of a political campaign.
The sessions are on Aug. 18, Aug. 25, and Sept. 1. For more information, contact the chamber at 281-391-5289.
Bissell Pet Foundation is sponsoring reduced adoption fees of $50 or less from July 11–31. The longest-ever Summer National “Empty the Shelters” event will be hosted in more than 250 shelters in 42 states, including Special Pals.
Special Pals, 3830 Greenhouse Road, will participate July 11-31, offering $25 adoption fees for all cats and dogs older than 4 months. All interested adopters can find more details online at the website specialpals.org/adopt.
“Shelters are calling me daily and BISSELL Pet Foundation is feeling the burden of overcrowding,” Cathy Bissell, Bissell Pet Foundation founder, said. “With the euthanasia of homeless dogs up 22% in just the first quarter of 2022 alone, we knew we had to act quickly to help at-risk pets. Empty the Shelters is the largest funded adoption event in the country, and by extending the event to three weeks, we can help meet the immediate need to save lives.”
This is the third Empty the Shelters event for Special Pals, and past events have found hundreds of homes for animals in Houston. “More adoptions from our shelter means more space for us to save animals who are at risk of being euthanized in overcrowded shelters,” Becky French, Special Pals executive director, said.
Bissell Pet Foundation’s “Empty the Shelters” event is the largest funded adoption event in the country. With a goal of encouraging more families to choose adoption, this lifesaving effort has helped more than 96,000 pets find loving homes since 2016. “Empty the Shelters” is Bissell Pet Foundation’s largest program, partnering with a total of 443 animal welfare organizations in 47 states and Canada to reduce adoption fees.
Adoption is a lifetime commitment. Bissell Pet Foundation and Special Pals urge families to do their research about the pet they are interested in adopting, as well as adoption requirements. For more information, visit the websites bissellpetfoundation.org/empty-the-shelters as well as specialpals.org.
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