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OUR VIEW: Hisses and cheers

HISSES to the news that a former Charles Mix County sheriff's deputy allegedly stole a firearm and was arrested last Friday.

We put a lot of trust in law enforcement to uphold the law, and it goes without saying that they should follow the law themselves. So when we heard the news that Jesse McLaughlin was arrested on grand theft charges, we were disappointed.

What isn't disappointing is the actions of Charles Mix County Sheriff Randy Thaler. Thaler informed us of the arrest and said he "will not tolerate employees of the Sheriff's Office violating the law."

While McLaughlin's alleged actions put a bad taste in our mouths, it's immediately reassuring that Thaler was so forthcoming about the incident. So there may be the occasional bad apple in law enforcement, like any other occupation, but we're certain most officers of the law behave more like Thaler than McLaughlin.

CHEERS to another round of James Valley Drug & DUI Court graduates last week.

Kyler Way, William Lurken and Phillip Hull were recognized for completing the supervision program, which helps drug and DUI offenders kick their old habits and start fresh.

We assume the program is challenging, and we commend those who graduated for putting their effort into being better citizens.

We hope the community focuses on the graduates' recent effort to change for the better instead of their past mistakes.

HISSES to the increase in fatal car crashes in 2017.

Last week, we reported that fatal crashes were up in 2017 — although the final report hasn't yet been released.

We urge everyone to remember to buckle their seat belt and use caution on the road, especially in poor road conditions.

CHEERS to the Mitchell City Council and city officials for attempting to resolve a challenging issue on Burr Street.

New sidewalks were installed during a recent construction project, leaving business owners with the legal responsibility to clear ice and snow from sidewalks more than 40 feet away.

The City Council and other city officials are aiming to resolve the unique issue without opening up any loopholes or potential legal challenges that would allow other people in city limits to find ways around clearing their own sidewalks.

It's a tricky issue, there's no doubt about that, but we hope the citizens of Mitchell can be patient and let the city find a resolution. And if one thing is certain, this is another in a long line of instances where Mitchell's decision to add a full-time city attorney to its staff was the correct move.

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