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   Investigative Services


Year-End Reports     Investigative Section     Detective_Division   
Computer Crimes Unit      Narcotics_Division - Meth Lab Dump Sites    
Snowmobile Division     Substance Abuse Abatement Program   Red Med Box  

Click on blue underlined links for more information.

If you have information on a crime or narcotics violation, contact the following officers:

Detective Division
D/Sgt. Tom Macyauski 269-657-8200 ext. 3406
269-415-0082 FAX
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Detective Sharon VanDam 269-657-8200 ext 3409
269-415-0082 FAX
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
D/Lt. Mark R. McCulfor 269-657-8200 ext 3402
269-657-8296, ext 3402
269-415-0082 FAX
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Narcotic's Office
Narcotic's FAX
Computer Crime Division
Detective Ben Ludwig 269-269-657-8200 ext 3407
269-657-8296, ext 3407
269-415-0082 FAX
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Narcotic's Office
Narcotic's FAX
Narcotics Division
D/Lt. Mark R. McCulfor
Narcotics Supervisor
269-657-8200 ext 3402
269-657-7316 FAX
269-657-8296, ext 3402
269-415-0082 FAX
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Narcotic's Office
Narcotic's FAX

Detective Casey Davis 269-657-8200 ext 3404
269-657-8296 ext 3404
269-415-0082 FAX
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Narcotic's Office
Detective Mick Masterson 269-657-8200 ext. 3406
269-657-8296 ext. 3406
269-415-0082 FAX
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Narcotic's Office
Detective Ben Downey 269-657-8200 ext. 3408
269-657-8296 ext. 3408
269-415-0082 FAX
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Narcotic's Office
Deputy Greg Pentland 269-657-8200 ext. 3403
269-657-8296 ext. 3403
269-415-0082 FAX
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Narcotic's Office
Deb VanHouten,
Support Staff
269-657-8200 ext. 3410 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.


Investigative Section

The Investigative Section of the Sheriff’s Office is comprised of the Detective Division, Narcotics Division, Computer Crime Unit, Substance Abuse Abatement Program (Reports & Arrest tracking only) and the Snowmobile Enforcement Unit.

The Investigative Section of the Van Buren County Sheriff’s Office has two Lieutenants that supervises and investigates criminal activities.  

The Detective Division comprises of a Lieutenant who supervises a Detective and a Deputy Investigator, along with the Computer Crimes Unit that has a Detective assigned who also assists in both divisions (Detective & Narcotic’s). The Sheriff’s Office also has one Detective Sergeant assigned to the Michigan State Police -Southwest Michigan Commercial Auto Recovery Unit (SCAR).

Detective Division

The three investigators assigned to the Detective Division provide assistance and support to the Uniformed Response Division. They conduct lengthy and/or complicated investigations not only generated by the Uniform Response Division, but also referrals from local, state and federal agencies.

The investigations for 2015 resulted in the arrest of 18 (20) individuals on 30 (40) arrest counts. There were also an additional 13 (13) counts of exceptional clearance, which means a suspect was identified but prosecutions were declined. The Detectives also had 14 (9) assists to other agencies, conducted 14 (8) background investigations, 19  (14) search warrants, 14 (22) hours of public relations, and 6 (4) hours of instructing.

In 2015, the Detective Division investigated 86 (73) complaints, with 53 (40) being violent crimes including, 2 (3) homicides, 2 Felonious Assaults, 1 negligent homicide, 47 (36) sexual assaults, and 2 (1) armed robbery.  The remaining - crimes investigated were breaking & entering, larcenies, vehicle theft, embezzlements, arson, fraud, receiving and concealing stolen property and safe breaking. The division has 22 (20) open ongoing investigations that were carried into 2016. This Division also worked 5 (4) death investigations.

This Division also has a Detective that is assigned to the Michigan Sheriff’s Association’s Mission Team which will assist in internal investigations at other Sheriff’s Departments. This Detective was not called to assist in any investigations in 2015 – 2014-1.

The Detective division was involved in several major cases which included taking the lead and solving a Homicide in which the suspect fled the state after the body was discovered and was quickly located, taken in to custody, and returned to Michigan to face charges as well as valuable evidence in the case being located and returned to Michigan as well.

These three investigators are highly dedicated and motivated in investigating and solving criminal cases.

Computer Crimes Unit

In 2003, the Computer Crime Unit was established and has grown in case load, technical hardware and software, training and knowledge. A forensic computer examiner became needed due to the ever-evolving Internet growth and advancement in technology. The Internet has become a source for on line child pornography, and sexual predators, fraud, and other crimes. An investigator was trained as a forensic examiner and has conducted investigations for this office, local, and federal agencies as well.

The mission of the Computer Crime Unit is to lend technical support to the Van Buren County’s Office and area law enforcement, in the proper collection, preservation analysis of digital evidence.

The Computer Crimes Unit handled 62 (49) cases in 2015.

Breakdown of Cases by Agency Breakdown of Cases by Category
Van Buren County Sheriff's Office 49 Accost Child for Immoral Purpose 1
Dowagiac Police Department 1 Assult 1
Lawton Police Department 1 B&E 4
Allegan County 1 Child Pornography 4
MDOC Probation-Parole 6 CSC 4
Paw Paw Police Department 3 Drug Related 15
Prosecutor's Office 1 Embezzlement 1
TOTAL 62 Flee & Elude 1
    Found Property 2
    Homicide 4
    Identity Theft 1
    Larceny 1
    MDOP 3
    Missing Persons 4
    Other 6
    Probation-Parole Violation 5
    Robbery 2
    Suicide-Suspicious Death 2
    Threats-Stalking 1
 2015 GRAND TOTAL  62

The task of conducting a complete forensic examination, depending on the offense and amount of media, can take a great deal of time and involve numerous complex steps. These steps can included not only the forensic examination but also the search warrant issues with seized evidence, search warrants of ISP and other companies, the submission for victim identification to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and a host of other smaller but just as important procedures.

New forensic software was purchased, all of which is aiding in the processing of electronic evidence.  Additional hardware was also purchased for gathering evidence from DVR and other video devices.

Thomas Macyauski, D/Lt.

Narcotics Division

The Narcotics Division is made up three Detectives, Sergeant, and a Lieutenant. The Lieutenant also supervises the Snowmobile Division.

The four investigators assigned to the Narcotic’s Division had a productive and busy year. The narcotics investigators conducted investigations involving street level dealers along with lengthy and/or long term investigations with Federal agencies. They also provide assistance and support to the Uniformed Response Division and Local Police agencies.

In 2015, Narcotic’s Division conducted 200 (224) narcotic investigations.  Following is a breakdown of the investigations.

Total Search Warrants Executed:  32 (33)

·         22 (19) Methamphetamine search warrants executed

·         6 (8) Marijuana search warrants executed

·         4 (6) Cocaine or other drug related search warrants executed

Total Narcotic Division Initiated Contact: 64 (53)

·         35 (35) Methamphetamine related investigations

·         22 (31) Marijuana related investigations

·         7 (1) Cocaine or other related investigations

In 2015 the Narcotic Division arrested 146 (173) suspects on 262 (309) arrest counts.

Breakdown Of The Arrest Count Numbers

Conspiracy to Manufacture Meth 2 OUID 1
Delivery of Crack Cocaine 18 Parole Violation 7
Delivery of Heroin 10 Possession of Marijuana 1
Delivery of Marijuana 7 Possession of Analogues 2
Delivery of Meth 14 Possession of Cocaine 6
DWLS 2 Possession of Heroin 2
Felon in Possession Firearm 2 Possession of Marijuana 22
Felony Warrant 2 Possession of Meth 49
Kidnapping 1 Possession of Pseudo 1
Maintain a Drug House 22 Probation Violation 7
Manufacture Marijuana 11 Possession With Intent To Deliver 1
Misdemeanor Warrant 10  Resisting & Obstructing 3
No Insurance 1 Smurfing 8
Operating-Maintain Meth Lab 50    
 2015 GRAND TOTAL  262 (309)

146 (173) suspects arrested on 262 (309) counts

Van Buren County and Southwestern Michigan continues to see a big impact of Methamphetamine and the associated clandestine labs. Over the last couple years we have also seen an increase in Heroin and prescription pill sales and use throughout the County.

The Van Buren County Narcotics Division works closely with local police departments and surrounding Counties to address the needs of Cities and Villages that cannot address the drug problem on their own, also combat cross County drug dealing. The Narcotics Division also works closely with Federal Agencies, such as the Drug Enforcement Agency, Federal Bureau of Investigations, and others for cases that warrant Federal prosecution.

Meth Lab Dump Sites

      Sheriff Dale R. Gribler reports the Van Buren County Sheriff's Office Central Dispatch, along with the Van Buren County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Unit, receive numerous calls fromMeth Lab Dump Site 3-22-2010 citizens, regarding meth lab trash found along side of roads, open fields and wooded areas.   After the snow is gone, it is easier to notice these items on the ground.  Some of these items may have been there through the winter or just recently thrown there. 
     The items typically found are plastic 2 liter pop bottles used as gas generators, which can be either capped or have a tube sticking out from the bottle.  Even if they look old, once moved, they will start to react again and give off a hazardous gas.  Another item typically found are plastic Gatorade type bottles, which are used as the actual meth lab vessel.  These are generally capped containing the waste, after a cook is finished.  You will also find peeled batteries, used coffee filters, used bottles of drain opener, Lye and camp fuel cans.

Meth Lab Dump Site 3-22-2010  
   Sometimes these items are tossed out as a single item, but mostly these items are all in one trash bag.  No matter how long they have been there, these items pose a potential hazard to you.  If you see an item you believe is meth related, do not touch it.  If you see a trash bag along the road or even in a field, do not open the bag.  Once these items are disturbed, the reaction may begin again, giving off a hazardous gas.  These items also pose additional hazards by being caustic and flammable. 
     If you believe you have located a meth trash dump site, stay away and contact authorities

Anyone with information can contact the Van Buren County Sheriff’s Office at (269) 657-3101, Crime Stoppers 1-800-342-7867, Silent Observer (269) 343-2100 or your local Police Department.

Substance Abuse Abatement Program

     In 2015, the Van Buren County Substance Abuse Abatement Program enforcement officer(s) who are working with the New Directions and Drug Treatment Court programs, investigated 140 (130) violations of probation, parole or a bond violation resulting in the arrest and/or violation of 132 (125) individuals. These violations occurred after being placed on probation, paroled from prison or while awaiting trial. The violations were all from drug use after being placed on one of the programs.

Snowmobile Division

     In 2015, the Snowmobile Division patrolled 39 (78) hours, made 593 (468) contacts, issued 3 (2) citations, gave 26 (16) verbal warnings, investigated 3 (2) complaints and 0 (0) accidents.

The annual Department of Natural Recourses (DNR) grant provides funding for wages, officer equipment, two snowmobiles, and trailer so that officers can patrol the trails within the county.

Red Med Box

     In April 29 2013, the Van Buren County Sheriff’s Office introduced the “RED MED BOX” for the collection of unused and/or wanted medications .Yearend 2015 we collected 1437.7 pounds, 2013- 1306.5 pounds, 2013 04/29 – 12/31/13- 844.50 pounds.  As of the end of 2015 we now have thirteen (13) locations throughout the county that the Sheriff’s Office collects unwanted medications.   Click here to a list of Red Med Box locations.

Mark McCulfor, D/Lt.
Narcotics Investigative Division
Van Buren County Sheriff's Office
205 South Kalamazoo Street
Paw Paw, MI 49079
Phone: 269-657-3101 Ext. 3402
Narcotics: 269-657-8296
Click here to send an email.

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