Yates County Sheriff's Office
Court Security Division 

Yates County Courthouse 
415 Liberty Street 
Penn Yan, NY 14527 
Phone:  315-536-5107


Court Security Division

Left to right: Sgt. Dekay, CSO Christensen, CSO Bacher, CSO Housel, CSO Burden, CSO Skelly 

History

In 2001, the construction of a new court house and renovation of the old courthouse started, with it’s completion in 2002.  The old court house which was originally constructed in 1835 was renovated into county offices. With this change the County went from a two courtroom courthouse and a few offices to a three story structure that has four courtrooms and offices for Judicial and Non-judicial staff, the Yates County District Attorney, County Attorney, Dispute mediation, Public Defender and the Yates County Probation Department.

Today with the advanced technology and state of the art equipment, Yates County Court Security strives to provide the safest and most secure court procedures possible.

Training

Members of the Court Security Division continue to strive forward with all energy devoted to providing the safest and most secure court environment possible.  In order to complete this objective, members of the Court Security Division are always involved in the latest training available along with maintaining their current skills through in- service training.

Such training includes

  • Searches
  • First-aid / CPR with Defibrillator                   
  • Chemical agent         
  • Firearms qualifications          
  • Interview techniques and other related topics in the field of Court security.

Duties and Responsibilities

A Sergeant, two full-time officers, four part-time officers and two part-time court attendants staff the Yates County Court Security Division.  Court Security/Corrections Officers are responsible for the safety of all court and county office employees, as well as the safety of the citizens conducting business within these two buildings. Such duties would include, but are not limited to protection of Judges, patrolling the interior and exterior of these buildings, responding to all emergencies within the county complex, weapon and contraband screening and confiscation when necessary.

Upon entering the Courthouse, all persons will be required to pass through a scanning device called a magnetometer and have all packages, purses, wallets, and clothing scanned through an x-ray machine. Due to the requirements, of this process visitors may experience a slight delay. Cell phones and recording devices are not permitted inside the court house and will be vouchered and returned upon exiting the building.

These procedures are necessary to ensure the safety of all persons conducting business within the courthouse. Based upon the weapons screening statistics and the numbers of arrests and incidents, these are prudent measures.

The Courthouse has two separate holding areas, one located on the first floor and the other one located on the second floor between the two main courtrooms.  The two holding areas are connected by an elevator that is controlled and monitored by Court Security Officers from the Security Control Room. Because the holding areas are on the first and second floor this makes for a safer Courtroom environment by not having all the incarcerated defendants in the Courtroom at once.  The first floor holding area includes a defendant intake processing area.  This is used when the County Court Judge remands a defendant to the custody of the Sheriff.  At times Court Security Officers perform the same duties as a Correction Officer.  The holding area is connected directly to a two-vehicle sally port.  This allows transport vehicles to enter the facility and be secured within before any incarcerated person exits the vehicle.