AZTEC, N.M. (AP) — San Juan County Sheriff Ken Christesen says he wants to expand the responsibilities of unpaid reserve deputies who work for the northwestern New Mexico county.
Christesen tells The Daily [auth] Times (http://bit.ly/180sRdQ) that he plans to assign his most experienced reserve deputies to a soon-to-be-formed cold case squad that will investigate unsolved homicides.
The sheriff says private donations have been critical to the recent success of the reserve program. Taxpayers only pay to train, clothe and arm the reserve deputies.
Reserve deputies average about 5,000 volunteer hours each year.
Christesen restarted the reserve program after he became sheriff in 2011. The county currently has 29 reserve deputies, and the office is looking to boost that number to 40 early next year.