Niagara Sheriff’s Office assigns 5 deputies as school resource officers

Photos from Niagara County Sheriff’s Office: Pictured from left include Niagara County Sheriff’s deputies who are working as school resource officers, including Deputy Gwendolyn Schuler at Starpoint Central School and Deputy Michelle Ohar at the Orleans/Niagara BOCES Vocational School.

Posted 5 September 2022 at 10:47 am

Press Release, Niagara County Sheriff Michael J. Filicetti

LOCKPORT – The Niagara County Sheriff’s Office has recently appointed three new School Resource Officers throughout the county for the upcoming 2022-23 school year.

This brings the ranks of the SRO team to five. These Deputies are assigned to Newfane Central School District, Niagara BOCES Vocational School, Wilson Central School District, Niagara

Charter School and Starpoint Central School District.

“Cooperation with the school districts has been tremendous,” said Sheriff Filicetti. “We were able to add deputies to Wilson, Starpoint and Niagara Charter School through agreements with each district.  I look forward to these partnerships to keep children safe and foster relationships between law enforcement and our youth in Niagara County.”

The position of an SRO is unique in the law enforcement profession and requires a deputy to take on multiple roles. They are at the forefront of safety in the schools. They can take on the role of an educator or instructor inside the classrooms to share their experiences and knowledge to the students and staff.

In addition, an SRO may at times serve as a counselor to students. With training in de-escalation techniques and crisis intervention, deputies can assist students to navigate through most situations. An SRO becomes an essential member of the school district and community.

  • Deputy Raymond Needle is assigned to the Newfane Central School district and has been in that role since February of 2022. Deputy Needle has been with the Niagara County Sheriff’s Office since October of 2006. He is currently a member of the Emergency Response Team, a Field Training Officer, and certified Mental Health Instructor. Deputy Needle is also a graduate and lifetime resident of Newfane.
  • Deputy Michelle Ohar is assigned to Niagara BOCES Vocational School and has been there since January of 2022. Deputy Ohar was hired by NCSO in January of 2021 and recently completed Basic SRO School.
  • Deputy Talon Zuchlewski will be the SRO for the Wilson Central School District and began there on Sept. 1. Deputy Zuchlewski was hired by NCSO in August of 2016 and is currently a member of the Emergency Response Team, Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Team, a Field Training Officer, Bike Patrol, and Crisis Intervention Team certified.
  • Deputy Joshua Cain has been assigned to Niagara Charter School and began on Sept. 1. Deputy Cain was hired by NCSO in December of 2021 with over 15 years of law enforcement experience, serving in Middleport, Barker, Youngstown and Lewiston Police Departments. He is currently a member of the Accident Investigation Unit, a Field Training Officer, a certified Police Instructor, and Peer Support.
  • Deputy Gwendolyn Schuler is assigned to the Starpoint Central School District as of Sept. 1. Deputy Schuler was hired in April of 2021 and is currently a member of Bike Patrol and is certified in Advanced Roadside Impairment Driving Enforcement (ARIDE).

Partner law enforcement agencies in Niagara County have also bolstered their School Resource Officer ranks to keep our children safe in our schools.

Pictured from left include Deputy Joshua Cain at the Niagara Charter School, Deputy Talon Zuchlewski at Wilson Central School, and Deputy Raymond Needle who is assigned to Newfane Central School.