Mercer County deputies train on a daily basis. Whether it's just going through procedures and situations in their mind while on patrol, or getting in time at the gun range, it's an everyday thing. Each deputy knows that they must constantly continue to learn and sharpen their skills so they will be ready at the moment of greatest need to one of their fellow officers or a citizen of this county.
The training division consists of highly trained and qualified deputies who provide training not only for the Mercer County Sheriff's Department but for agencies throughout the state as well as out of state agencies.
Chief Deputy D. B. Bailey
Chief Deputy D. B. Bailey has served in law enforcement and corrections since 1983 and holds a fifth degree black belt in Okinawa Goju-Ryu Karate having studied this discipline since 1973. He is certified by the West Virginia Law Enforcement Training Sub-Committee as an instructor in the following areas:
Law Enforcement Defensive Tactics, Use of Force, Handgun & Shotgun, and a certified Glock Armorer.
Detective-Corporal S. A. Sommers
Corporal Sommers has served as a law enforcement officer for 10 years with 9 years as a member of the Mercer County Sheriff's Department. Corporal Sommers also brings with him 12 years experience in the fire and EMS service where he still serves as a Chief of a local fire department. In addition, Corporal Sommers is a member of the SWAT Team, is a full time investigator with the WV Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and holds multiple certifications in various disciplines in emergency services, including: Hazardous Materials Technician, Confined Space Technician, FEMA Certified NIMS Instructor, Medicolegal Death Investigation, WIlderness Search & Rescue and basic computer forensics.
Detective R. M. Combs
Detective Combs has served as a Deputy Sheriff since 2000 and is a founding member of the Mercer County SWAT Team where he is currently the team leader and sniper. Additionally, he is certified by the West Virginia Law Enforcement Sub-Committee as an instructor in the following areas:
Handgun & Shotgun, Patrol Rifle, Rapid Emergency Deployment (Active Shooter), and SWAT Tactics.
Deputy A. M. Ballard
Deputy Ballard has been in law enforcement for nearly 10 years, serving the City of Princeton and currently the citizens of Mercer County. Deputy Ballard is also a veteran of the United States Army where he was deployed during Operation Enduring Freedom. Deputy Ballard is a certified K-9 handler and the administrator of the Governor's Highway Safety Program for the Mercer County Sheriff's Department. Deputy Ballard is certified by the West Virginia Law Enforcement Training Sub-Committee as an instructor in the following areas:
Handgun & Shotgun, Patrol Rifle, RADAR and Laser use for Speed Detection, and Glock Armorer.
Deputy J. E. Coulter
Deputy Coulter has been in law enforcement since 1994 during which time he has acquired certifications in multiple areas including as a Crisis Negotiator; he is also a charter member of the West Virginia Crisis Negotiation Association. He is also a veteran of the United States Airforce where he served in support of Operation Desert Shield/Storm and a past member of the Royal British Legion. Deputy Coulter is certified by the West Virginia Law Enforcement Training Sub-Committee in the following areas:
Handgun & Shotgun, Patrol Rifle, Crisis Negotiation, and Glock Armorer.