Sheriff, forest supervisor confab

By From page A1 | August 21, 2013

Following the El Dorado County sheriff’s revocation of the National Forest Service’s ability to enforce state laws, the sheriff and Eldorado National Forest supervisor met recently to discuss law enforcement.

Sheriff John D’Agostini met with recently appointed Eldorado National Forest Supervisor Laurence Crabtree and Forest Service Law Enforcement Capt. Frank Aguilar, a press release stated. They concluded that there were still issues to remedy but both are committed to keeping forest visitors safe while protecting the forest’s resources.

The meeting was a result of D’Agostini revoking the USFS’s ability to enforce California state laws after receiving a number of complaints from forest visitors. The USFS does, however, retain the ability to enforce federal laws within the county.

“It is the style and manner over time,” D’Agostini said in the press release, “in which they enforce this authority, that will be the litmus test to determine if the Forest Service will regain their authority to enforce state laws in El Dorado County.”

Crabtree wanted to remind visitors that the USFS is not a powerless entity. “It’s great to see so many people enjoying America’s great outdoors,” Crabtree said. “It’s  important for visitors to keep in mind that Forest Service law enforcement officers will continue to ensure that national forest resources are protected and federal laws and regulations are understood and enforced.”

With the season at the high point of summer camping, “More people in the national forest often means more opportunity for disputes between people and violations of state laws,” D’Agostini said. “My deputies will continue to respond to incidents requiring peace officers in the Eldorado National Forest.”

Cole Mayer

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