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February 12, 2016

Sheriff / Coroner Home

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It is our goal to provide you with the highest degree of Law Enforcement found anywhere; thereby making your communities and homes safe and providing you with the safety that you and your family deserve. By listening to the citizens of St. Clair County and applying their input, coupled with the dedicated professionals employed by your Sheriff's Office, we will continue to Make A Difference Together!

Sheriff Terry Surles   

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If you wish to report criminal activity please e-mail to

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Would you like to read the new gun law? Click this link to read it. 



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Assistant Sheriff-Billy J. Murray

Captain  John McWaters
Phone:  205-594-2140  Fax:  205-594-2146

Pell City

Assistant Sheriff-Billy J. Murray

Captain  Dale Isbell
Phone:  205-884-6840  Fax:  205-884-6846

Emergency 911

Central dispatch non-emergency numbers



Ashville Jail: 205-594-2149
Pell City Jail: 205-884-6842

Mailing Address:
Sheriff's Office & Jail Ashville
48  6th Street  Suite 300
Ashville, AL 35953


Sheriff's Office & Jail Pell City
1610 Cogswell Avenue Suite 206
Pell City, AL 35125


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The Investigation Division has nine investigators who are responsible for investigating property crimes, including theft, burglary, and forgery. These investigators also investigate homicides, murders, and sexual assault crimes. Two investigators are assigned to narcotics. One investigator handles sex offender registration.

Investigators are trained in the latest technology and are Alabama State Certified Evidence Technicians to assist in the processing and collecting of evidence at crime scenes. The investigation divisions as of 2007 has over one hundred fifty years experience in law enforcement.

Investigator contact list

Chief lnv. Tommy Dixon (205) 594-2140
Inv. Demetrius Seals  (205) 884-6840
Inv. Joey Brown
Inv. Greg Watson
(205) 594-2140
(205) 594-2140

Inv. Randy Hurst

(205) 884-6840

Inv. Wayne Layton 
Inv. Bart Lonergan

(205) 884-6840
(205) 884-6840

Sex Offender Registration

Inv. Owen Walton  (205) 884-6840


Inv. Rick Oliver 
Inv. James Sargent

(205) 594-2517
(205) 594-2516


The Patrol Division is currently comprised of 35 sworn Deputy Sheriff's who provide police services to the unincorporated areas of St. Clair County's 640 square miles. The Patrol Division works to serve & protect the citizens of St. Clair County and assists Municipal Agencies as the need arises. The Patrol Division provides physical security for all Judicial Proceeding and serves thousands of warrants, subpoenas, and civil processes each year.  In addition, the Patrol Division transports inmates throughtout the state and surrounding states, assists both County Jails with inmate transportation, and responds to the jail to assist with inmate disturbances. The Patrol Division is divided into a day and night shift. The day shift is further divided into Northern (Ashville) and Southern (Pell City) Divisions that correspond to their respective Judicial Divisions. The day shift has primary responsibility for civil processes, subpoenas and warrants service. 


St Clair County K-9-consists of a deputy with German Shepard Narcotics-Detector Dogs. The handler and his partner have been certified through Canine Concept in St. Clair County. The K-9 unit has one primary patrol unit and one backup, which is responsible for assisting is school searches and demonstrations. The primary handler is Deputy Lionel Callender and his partner Lexie. The K-9 unit assists the Sheriff's Office along with Municipal and State Police Agencies with drug related offenses ranging from search warrants to traffic stops. The unit is also responsible for searching schools throughout the county and providing demonstrations for students and citizens. This unit is on call 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

D.A.R.E.: To Resist Drugs and Violence

The St. Clair County Sheriff's Office is a community oriented Sheriff's Office. Deputy Matt Morris serves as the full time K-12 certified Drug Abuse Resistance Education Instructor and School Resource Officer.

The 5th Grade D.A.R.E. Program is implemented in Ashville, Odenville, Springville, Steele and Ragland Schools in St. Clair County. The St. Clair County School V Resource/D.A.R.E. Instructor assists other Law Enforcement Agencies in St. Clair County with other Community Oriented Programs. An estimated 1,400 students receive instruction each year in the St. Clair School System in as a result of implementing the D.A.R.E. Program.


It is reported that there are over 4 ½ million Americans with Alzheimer's disease and half of these are in the wandering stages.  Alzheimer's disease affects the short-term memory.  Symptoms usually involve forgetfulness, difficulty with abstract thinking, disorientation, personality changes and loss of judgment.  Patients begin to not recognize family and friends and tend to live in the past.  Project lifesaver also serves patients with Autism, Down's Syndrome, and Prader-Willi Syndrome.  We have on patient who has seizures and does not remember her actions during her seizures.

When a patient reaches the wandering stage, that of walking off from home and being unable to return, it can be a very dangerous situation and it represents a critical emergency.  The patient is at the mercy of the elements, be it cold, hot, dehydration, or failure to take necessary medications.

Project Lifesaver is a program developed in 1999 by the 43rd Virginia Search and Rescue in Chesapeake, Virginia.  Utilizing tracking equipment, Project Lifesaver now has the ability to track patients that walk away from their home.  The patient is fitted with a transmitter no bigger than a watch and band, which is worn on the wrist or ankle.  The frequency is recorded by the attending agency, along with other pertinent information about the patient.  Should the patient walk away, the Care Giver notifies the agency and a search is begum immediately using a tracking receiver.  The signal from the transmitter can be picked up by ground and air patrol units and the patient located quickly.  Search times that have normally been as long as days can now be reduced to less than an hour. 

The St. Clair County Sheriff's Office has been a part of the Project Lifesaver program since 2002.  In the summer of 2002 the St. Clair County Sheriff's Office had an elderly female walk away from her residence.  The search took 12 hours and the female was found very tired but un-injured.  After this incident Sheriff Terry Surles contacted Projected Lifesaver.  Sergeant Dale Phillips who is employed by the Tuscaloosa County Sheriff's Office and is also the State of Alabama Coordinator for Project Lifesaver came to our county and trained our agency on the Project Lifesaver system.  At that time Sheriff Surles purchased the necessary equipment and came on board with Project Lifesaver.

Anyone who has a friend or relative with Alzheimer's disease, Autism, or Down's syndrome (where a patient might be prone to wander away) who is interested in the Project Lifesaver program can contact the St. Clair County Sheriff's Office at (205) 594-2140, or (205) 884-6840.  Project Lifesaver program coordinator for the St. Clair County Sheriff's Office is Sergeant Greg Walker at (205) 594-2505.  Email at  Also more information can be obtained online at  By becoming an online Project Lifesaver member and creating a user name and password you can find other agencies that are part of Project Lifesaver anywhere in the country.  Agencies who are interested in starting Project lifesaver in their communities should contact Project Lifesaver, Inc. at (757) 432-4382.




Administrator: Bill Richvalsky (205) 884-3333

St. Clair County Central Dispatch is the centralized Dispatch Center that handles all calls for public service coming in and going out for all cities and municipalities of St. Clair County.

The Operations Center is equipped with a computerized Dispatch Center (CAD), which enables us to keep up with calls and dispatch them in a timely manner. The CAD system has mapping capabilities that allow us to pin-point exact locations of callers with the capability of communicating with the deaf by TDD. We have ten 911-phone lines, ten administration lines, Nextel and Southern Linc Communications coming into the Facility. We also have Motorola two-way system operating on eleven frequencies. All telephone lines and radio frequencies are recorded this allows us to review calls when needed to use in court for evidence; these recordings are saved for approximately two years.

The Operation Center has the capability of setting off the emergency sirens county wide to warn the citizens about storms or other hazardous situations; the St. Clair County EMA provides the sirens. We also have radios that can monitor bad weather conditions and communicate with other agencies through out the state.

The Center Operates 24 hours a day with a diesel powered back up generator. Our repeater Tower Sites also have generator back up systems allowing us to operate non-stop with out down time.

All of our Telecommunicators receive training in all fields of Service relating to the job. They are APCO certified forty hours, EMD certified twenty-four hours, NCIC certified sixteen hours and CPR certified. This training allows us to provide the highest level of professional service to the citizens of St. Clair County.


Austin Nash-- Jail Administrator (205) 814-0766

Myrtis Moss  -  Captain Pell City Facility (205) 884-6842 
Shirley McKay-Smith  -  Captain Ashville Facility (205) 594-2149
Karen Thompson  -  Advanced Clerk (205) 594-2509

St. Clair County, a county older than the state, is one of only two counties in the State to host two separate county seats.  Ashville is the original county seat.  A county seat was established in Pell City in 1902 to accommodate citizens residing on the southern side of Backbone Mountain who encountered hazardous traveling conditions.  As a result of this, St. Clair County has two sets of county offices and jails.

Chief Austin Nash is the Jail Administrator and has the responsibility of managing both jails.  The facility in Ashville has 74 beds and a Juvenile Detention facility.  The facility in Pell City has 106 beds.  All female inmates are housed in the Pell City facility.

The St. Clair County Jail employees 12 fulltime jailers in the Pell City facility and 8 fulltime jailers in the Ashville facility.  Each facility has a jail captain who oversees the day to day operations.  St. Clair County Jail also employees 6 part time jailers and 4 casual jailers.

The St. Clair County Jail contracts with a professional medical company who provide nurses each day in each facility and a physician weekly to attend to the medical needs of inmates.

Reserve Deputy
The Reserve unit of the St. Clair Sheriffs Office is a volunteer group organized to augment the Sheriff's Office in providing law enforcement services for the citizens of St. Clair County.

The Reserve Deputy Program is currently coordinated by Sgt. Jonathan VanPelt and is composed of citizens 21 years-of-age and older, who volunteer their time to supplemental phases of departmental operations. The members come from all areas of the county and include individuals from a host of different professions. They have the same duty responsibilities and mission goals as their full time peers.

Reserve Deputies wear the same uniforms, have the same badges, identification cards and must meet all the education, training and duty requirements of the full time officers. Reserves assist the full time officers in the areas of patrol duty, criminal investigation, K-9 services, court services and sometimes give the only opportunity to have 2 men units, especially on busy nights and weekends.

All Reserve Deputies are required to provide their own personal equipment, including approved firearms, duty belt equipment, some uniform items, shoes, and ballistic vests. All members are required to complete the Law Enforcement Academy and meet Alabama Peace Officers Standards and Training (APOST) requirements.

The program clearly requires quite a commitment and these Reserve Deputies are a true service to our county and a vital part of the operation of the department.


Dennis Russell
St. Clair County Coroner
Pager: 205-805-5776
Office: 205-699-3181
Fax: 205-699-5584
Jeremiah Gilreath
Deputy Coroner
Pager: 205-280-5254
Office: 205-814-1756
Fax: 205-699-5584

The Office of Coroner in St. Clair County is an elected position for a term of four years. This department works very closely with the Distrcit Attorney's Office and the Sheriff's Department.  In 2000 the St. Clair county Commission purchased property and space for the Sheriff.  Sheriff Terry Surles designated this building as Death Investigation Department and assigned the Coroner.  This was the first facility  of this type in St. Clair County.  This facility is located at 14 17th Street So., Pell City, Alabama.  The Charles Forman Investigation Center is dedicated in memory and named after a former St. Clair county Coroner, Charles Forman.  This facility has a conference room, office, evidence room, examination room and a 10' x 12' refrigerated cooler with three examination tables.



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