Undersheriff Rich Maricelli

Jenn Maricelli pins a badge on the uniform of her husband, Rich Maricelli, on March 3 just after he was sworn in as the undersheriff for the Missoula County Sheriff's Office. Maricelli previously worked for the department 23 years before retiring in 2013.

Rich Maricelli, the new Missoula County undersheriff who officially started Monday, must attend a law enforcement refresher course in Helena at some point in his first year on the job.

Sheriff T.J. McDermott appointed Maricelli after former undersheriff Jason Johnson retired in February. Maricelli had a 23-year career with the Missoula sheriff's office before retiring in 2013 as the captain of detectives.

Because he spent several years away from active duty, state law requires Maricelli to attend a one-week refresher course. The undersheriff is able to serve as an officer right away with all the authority of the undersheriff position, but must finish the course within a year, said Perry Johnson.

Johnson is the executive director of the Montana Public Safety Officer Standards and Training Council, or POST, which handles certification of officers in the state.

An officer in good standing who has been out of active service for less than three years can return to a job with no additional requirements. Those with between three and five years away must complete a refresher course, which covers updates to the law and training in domestic violence and use of force. 

Anyone gone longer than five years must attend the entire Montana Law Enforcement Academy again.

The one-week refresher course is held twice a year in Helena, the fall and spring, Johnson said, although this year’s spring session was held last week.

Johnson, a former sheriff of Ravalli County, said he remembered Maricelli from his own time as an officer in the Bitterroot, and said he’s a great pick for undersheriff.

“I’m really glad he’s going to be back,” he said.

You must be logged in to react.
Click any reaction to login.

Law and Justice Reporter

Crime reporter for the Missoulian.