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New deputy sheriff on the job

Holbrook started duties on Monday

-Submitted photo
Webster County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Tyler Holbrook is sworn in by District Associate Judge Joseph Tofilon. Holbrook started his duties Monday.

The streets of Webster County were graced with a new presence this week as Deputy Tyler Holbrook assumed his new position with the Sheriff’s Office.

A former staffer at the Webster County Jail and reserve police officer in Dayton from 2017 to 2019, Holbrook said he’s excited to be back home after going away briefly to attend the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy and work for the city of Britt in Hancock County.

Holbrook fills the vacancy left by former Deputy Justin Wood, who departed in December after nearly 18 months with the Sheriff’s Office. Holbrook is the last hire the department has made since Deputy Jenny Randleman, the former police chief for Duncombe and Otho. Both towns are now under contract with the Sheriff’s Office for their law enforcement needs.

“He’s enthusiastic to learn and progress,” said Sheriff Jim Stubbs, noting that at 26 years old, Holbrook can help rejuvenate the department’s efforts towards progress while bringing a fresh perspective.

Holbrook graduated from the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy in April 2019, an accomplishment that Chief Deputy Rod Strait previously said made him a prime candidate in a competitive field.

-Messenger photo by Elijah Decious
Newly sworn in Webster County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Tyler Holbrook proudly poses with the department’s logo in the Law Enforcement Center.

Stubbs said that the number of candidates for law enforcement positions has dwindled over the years. Webster County competed with nine other hiring counties before its last round of tests. He said the county’s advantage with most staff is their local ties that help stabilize turnover.

“He’s a qualified candidate, has experience in the community, grew up close to us, and will be here for a long time,” Strait told Webster County Supervisors.

Having that box ticked means that county taxpayers save a significant amount on their upfront investment in a hire: putting a candidate through the academy takes four months and costs upwards of $10,000, according to Stubbs.

A Boone native, Holbrook said he knew he’d be back when he left the jail.

“I always knew I was going to come back here,” he said. “I knew this is the place I wanted to be.”

He just got lucky that an opening came up sooner rather than later, he said.

The new hire wanted to be a law enforcement officer to tackle unique, complex challenges that change with each day.

“It’s all a platform to do a lot of good,” Holbrook said.

Though the pace here feels a bit faster than it does in Britt, population 1,985, even as the department sees a slow down during the pandemic, Holbrook said he’s looking forward to it.

“We’re just excited to have him and for him to gain experience and do an excellent job for the citizens of Webster County,” Stubbs said.

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