Douglas County welcomes new Undersheriff
DOUGLAS COUNTY, Ore. - There's a new Undersheriff in Douglas County, and he's no stranger to the community.
After 21 years in law enforcement, Jeff Frieze started off the year with a new role as the Undersheriff with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office.
"I was happy, yet scared," said Frieze. "It's a big seat, I don't want to let the men and women that work here down."
Frieze spent five years as a patrol officer for the Sutherlin Police Department, then landed a job with the Sheriff's Office in 2012.
Sheriff John Hanlin says it was important to pick an Undersheriff who's familiar with the county.
"There's a closer connection to law enforcement through the community when it's somebody that was born and raised in those communities," said Hanlin. "So I believe there's a lot of value in that."
Frieze has spent most of his time in the North Douglas County, from working as a sergeant in Reedsport to coaching sports in Drain.
"They always come to me for information, or look at me as the guy that is going to solve their problems," said Frieze. "Sometimes I can, sometimes I can't."
As for what advice Undersheriff Frieze would tell his younger self:
"We're here to protect people and that's the main goal. Protect people that cannot protect themselves."
Frieze says he plans to settle into his new rule while still being active in the community.