SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. — State Police Superintendent Col. Jay Smithers announced Friday plans to combine the Gilbert and Williamson detachments at Williamson. Smithers said the move would better serve Mingo County residents.
“The safety and well-being of the citizens of West Virginia is a primary concern of the West Virginia State Police,” Smithers said in a prepared statement. “As Superintendent, I am accountable for running the agency in the most efficient and effective manner possible to accomplish our mission. Combining the Williamson and Gilbert Detachments makes sense not only from a monetary standpoint but from a public safety standpoint as well. It creates scheduling flexibility and allows for easier allocation of resources to respond to the needs of individual communities.”
The move has the support of House of Delegates Majority Leader Del. Harry Keith White of Mingo County.
“Even though there won’t be a bricks and mortar presence in Gilbert, I am assured there will always be a strong State Police presence, and that is what’s important,” White said.
Col. Smithers said the State Police would save $18,000 by not operating the Gilbert detachment building. The Gilbert phone number will remain operational with calls forwarded to Williamson.