Picture: Lt. Ron Ball from the Rexburg Police Department has been appointed as the interim Madison County Sheriff. | Andrea Olson, EastIdahoNews.com.
REXBURG — An interim sheriff was appointed by the Madison County Commissioners Thursday morning out of three candidates with law enforcement backgrounds.
Rexburg Police Department Lt. Ron Ball will serve in the position and be sworn in next month when he will officially begin his new role.
The previous sheriff, Rick Henry, resigned and took a job with Brigham Young University-Idaho as the Director of Public Safety last month. In turn, the Madison County Republican Central Committee found three candidates to fill the vacancy.
They submitted names to the Madison County commissioners, which included Ron Ball, Adam Ferguson, and Jared Willmore. Click here to read about each of them.
RELATED | Here are the 3 candidates being considered for Madison County Sheriff
RELATED | Madison County sheriff leaving to take new job at BYU-Idaho
On Thursday morning, an executive session held in the commissioner’s room at the Madison County Courthouse was supposed to last for 30 minutes but the discussion between the commissioners almost lasted an hour. They each tried to come up with a decision on who will fill the role.
Once the session was over, the public was invited to join. There was a crowd that flooded into the meeting room.
The crowd waiting to hear the announcement of the sheriff appointment. | Andrea Olson, EastIdahoNews.com
Ultimately, the commissioners said, it was a difficult decision to make the appointment for interim sheriff. The three candidates are qualified and have years of law enforcement experience.
“What we just did in the executive session, none of you will understand. Every one of you–all three of you–we went through as much as we knew, very meticulously and it was not a slam dunk by any means…it was a process,” said commissioner Brent Mendenhall.
“I’d like to say that this has been one of the hardest decisions I had to make yet. This has been a lot of discussion and a lot of sleepless nights,” Commissioner Dustin Parkinson added.
Chairman Todd Smith said the Republican Central Committee had a letter where they recommended Ron Ball to be the interim sheriff.
“With that…I will make that motion to appoint Mr. Ron Ball to be our next sheriff,” Smith announced.
The commissioners passed the motion and invited Ball to say a few words in front of everyone in attendance at the meeting.
“To everybody at the Madison County Sheriff’s Office, I am ready to start a new chapter. I plan on being dedicated to this office. I will do my best to make a good office, better. I am a firm believer that even with a good run office, there’s always room for improvement,” Ball said.
Ball told EastIdahoNews.com that he has been with the Rexburg Police Department for over 30 years. He is currently a lieutenant over the detective division.
He is looking forward to learning from those in the sheriff’s office.
“There’s a lot of experience here and I am going to depend on those guys to help show me the reins because it’s different between the sheriff’s office and a police department,” Ball explained. “You’ve got certain things within the sheriff’s office. You’ve got a jail, a DMV, and civil processing. That is all stuff that I will have to learn, and hopefully pretty quick.”
Lt. Ron Ball | Courtesy Rexburg Police Department
Although, he is sad to be leaving a department he has known for over 30 years.
“It’s tough leaving all those guys…especially what myself and my division have been through the last few years with the Daybell case. That has brought our group really, really close,” he said.
He was one of the lead investigators in the Daybell case.
As the newly appointed sheriff, Ball does have goals he hopes to achieve. He would like to discuss mental health.
“I would like to see issues with mental health addressed. Over my career in dealing with mental health and the suicides I have been to, it has always kind of been a thing for me,” he said.
He additionally would like to see what the sheriff’s office needs.
“I know this department is in need of a SWAT team or an Emergency Response Team. I’d like to make that a goal,” Ball said.
He said that he would like to see more collaboration and even cross-training between the Rexburg Police Department and the Madison County Sheriff’s Office due to his connections.
Ball won’t start his position until early December. He has to finish some of his work at the Rexburg Police Department and make sure everything is taken care of.
“It’s hard to shut off a 30+ year career in one day. I’ve got cases. I want to help (Chief Josh Rhodes) to transition to another lieutenant over the division,” he said.
Ball said he appreciates the commissioner’s faith in him and he is looking forward to the future.
“I am going to do my best. I want to be the best sheriff I can be. December 4th…I want to hit the ground running,” Ball said. “I think it’s appropriate to give Rick Henry a shout-out. He served here and ran a good department. I appreciate his efforts while he was here as sheriff.”
Ball will serve the remainder of the elected term through 2024. As of right now, he says he plans to run for sheriff next year to continue beyond the original term length.
The post An interim sheriff has been appointed in Madison County. Here’s who it is and when he will begin serving. appeared first on East Idaho News.