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Page updated 12/18/03 Traffic fines are at bottom of page


Click for Crime Rates   Links on emergency preparedness  

Maps of risk from floods, landslides (p.231), subsidence (p.251), summary (p.331)


Police, Sheriff, Fire, Ambulance




911 - Emergency - if you need someone in minutes, anywhere in the county. Know how to give driving directions. Breathe deeply & stay calm. Describe the problem. Give the phone number to call back. Don't hang up until the operator does. S/he may have more questions.


725-8484 - Non-emergency. Both this and previous number operate 24 hours a day. They send the nearest help, or the one with jurisdiction, no matter where you live in the county.


Info needed for traffic crimes: tag number & state, date & time, place, vehicle description, crime description; photos very helpful.


728-1983 - hotline for emergency conditions in county


728-2677 - Report a crime anonymously. Or report a crime in public schools anonymously: 800-418-6423 x359. Both numbers record your message.


Wvcrime.com report crimes with or without your name & address


800-233-fire(3473) - Arson hotline. Operates 24 hours a day. You can report anonymously. This is a state-wide number.
800-322-5530 -
Litter hotline. This is a statewide number.


877-FraudWV - Election fraud (statewide)


725-6550 - Victim's advocates. They're a professional staff in the county government who will help & support you after you report a crime to 911, no matter where you live in the county. They answer the phone 9-5 Monday-Friday, and take a recorded message other times.


Circuit Court records


If you call 911 from a land line, the 911 center knows what address you're calling from. If you call from a cell phone, they only know location within 150-1000 feet. Cell phones are great when you see an emergency while out on the road, but they're nowhere near as accurate as a land line.


FCC Phase II requires cell phone companies to give caller's location to 911 center:
• Use network antennas to locate caller within
– 100 meters for 67 percent of calls
– 300 meters for 95 percent of calls
• OR use GPS in handset to locate caller within
– 50 meters for 67 percent of calls
– 150 meters for 95 percent of calls
47CFR20.18(h) http://www.fcc.gov/Bureaus/Wireless/Orders/1999/fcc99245.txt (paragraphs 12, 72, 74)


If you have praise or complaint about an emergency worker (great success/mistakes, respectful/rude, helpful/harassing, quick response/no response or anything else), call their boss or the head of their department. The non-emergency number above will tell you their boss & phone number to call.


If you have a serious complaint that is not resolved, write to the civilian board in charge, return receipt requested. They have authority to investigate. Also you may want to ask if someone from a citizens group can give you advice, such as the NAACP, League of Women Voters, AARP, ACLU, etc. Possibly also call the State Attorney General 304-558-0546 or FBI 263-3421.




Click here to learn your rights when you're stopped or searched by police

Civilian boards are:


 - Sheriff's Civil Service Commission, PO Box 250, Charles Town WV 25414: Ginger Burcker appointed by Deputy Sheriff's Association. James Crawford 725-3426 appointed by county lawyers. Frank Rosario 728-7241, 518 Morrison St Charles Town, appointed by County Commission 9/29/01-9/29/05.


 - Charles Town Mayor, PO Box 14, Charles Town WV 25414: (Civil Service Commission does not receive complaints, but reviews them.)


 - Harpers Ferry Civil Service Commission, PO Box 555, Harpers Ferry, WV 25425


- Ranson Civil Service Commission, 312 S Mildred St, Ranson WV 25438:


 - Shepherdstown Town Council: PO Box 248, Shepherdstown WV 25443


 - State Police?


Central dispatch is supervised by the County Commission, PO Box 250, Charles Town WV 25414


Victim's Advocates are supervised by the County Prosecutor, PO Box 729, Charles Town WV 25414: Ralph Lorenzetti


Fire Companies/Departments - Articles on slow response times: Nationally,  Locally
Harpers Ferry/Bolivar (Friendship), PO Box 126, Harpers Ferry WV 25425
Charles Town (Citizens), PO Box 927, Charles Town WV 25414
Shepherdstown, PO Box F, Shepherdstown WV 25443.
Ranson (Independent), PO Box 925, Ranson WV 25438
Blue Ridge Mountain, Rt 1, Box 790, Harpers Ferry WV 25425

#7. Bakerton, PO Box F, Bakerton WV 25410, 304-876-0007


Insurance Services Office rates fire companies on a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 is best, and 10 is for homes more than 5 miles from a fire station. Insurance premiums generally go up with the rating, except State Farm uses its own experience by zip code to set premiums. Shepherdstown is rated 7 in city limits or within 1000 feet of a fire hydrant, and 9 for others, according to Tom Maiden's article in the 5/7/04 Shepherdstown Chronicle. I would appreciate hearing of other fire stations' ratings.


Emergency Preparedness Committee

WVU report on regions DC suburbanites might evacuate to (hype: even 3 Mile Island & 9/11 caused little evacuation)
Click here for facts & video on benefits of fire sprinklers at home

Value of music on 9/11/01

Links on emergency preparedness




If you can drive yourself or be driven safely, do so. You'll often get to treatment faster. The ambulance won't get you faster service at the hospital, since the crew will determine your condition on the way, and will tell the hospital if your case is not urgent. This is not a taxi service. Volunteers leave their homes and endanger their lives to reach you, and cannot respond to other calls when they are going to you.


If the answer to any of the following questions is yes, you need an ambulance:
1. Is the condition life-threatening?
2. Could the condition worsen or become life-threatening on the way to the hospital?
3. Could moving the victim cause further injury?
4. Does the victim need the skills or equipment of Paramedics or Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs)?


The fire & ambulance company will send an ambulance, which will usually come with a driver and an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) who may provide oxygen, splint a broken bone and other non-invasive procedures.
At the same time, the Ambulance Authority sends a support truck with a Paramedic who is allowed by WV law to do what an EMT may, and also provide drugs, insert a breathing tube or intravenous (IV) tube and other invasive procedures.


Ambulance Authority, PO Box 336, Charles Town WV 25414: Mike Alvarez, Pete Kelley, Steven McKinney, Scott Morgan, Cliff Peacher, Matt Perks


Reporting a Crime


The police or deputy sheriff will have a report form, to ask you some standard questions. Sample questions will be listed below, as soon as we can, so you can be prepared.


If someone harasses you with insults based on race, sex, religion, ethnicity, disability, politics, or sexual orientation, report it. While simple insults are not a crime, the police & sheriff want these reports, because if the person later attacks someone, the history of harassment (terrorising people) is significant in prosecuting the crime.

County Sheriff's Office

City Police Departments

WV Law Section 7-14-3. Civil service commission.

...three commissioners, one ... appointed by the bar association of such county, one ... appointed by the deputy sheriff's association of such county, and one ... appointed by the county commission...

Section 8-14-7. Policemen's civil service commission generally.

...three commissioners, one ... appointed by the mayor of the city; one ... appointed by the local fraternal order of police; and the third ... appointed by the local chamber of commerce, or if there be none, by a local businessmen's association. ... [or if none] by the other two commissioners ...

WV Law § 7-14-6. Powers and duties of commission.

(3) Make investigations, either sitting as a body or through a single commissioner, concerning all matters touching the enforcement and effect of the provisions of this article [promotion, demotion, training] ...

(6) Make an annual report ... and any suggestions it may have... available for public inspection...

§ 7-14-10. Refusal to examine or certify; review thereof.

The commission may refuse to ... certify as eligible one... who has been guilty of infamous or notoriously disgraceful conduct; ... or who refuses to comply with the rules and regulations of the commission...

§8-14-10. Powers, authority and duties of policemen's civil service commission.(3) Make investigations, either sitting as a body or through a single commissioner, concerning all matters touching the enforcement and effect of the civil service provisions of this article

(5) Make an annual report ... and any suggestions it may have ... available for public inspection...

§8-14-14. Refusal to examine or certify; review thereof.

The commission may refuse to ... certify as eligible one, ... who has been guilty of any crime or of infamous or notoriously disgraceful conduct;... or who refuses to comply with the rules and regulations of the commission.

§ 7-14-16. Training and retraining programs for all deputies required. (b) The civil service commission ... shall ... prescribe retraining programs which every deputy, whether first appointed such deputy before or after the effective date of this article, must satisfactorily complete from time to time after the effective date of this article, in order to continue as a deputy sheriff of such county or to be eligible for promotion...



§8-14A-1. Definitions (4) "Hearing board" means a board appointed to hold a hearing on a complaint against an accused officer...

(a) For civil service departments, the department chief shall appoint the first member, the members of the accused officer's department shall appoint the second member, and the first and second members shall appoint the third member by agreement...

(2) Each member shall be a police officer or firefighter within the accused officer''s department, or, with the department chief''s approval, a law-enforcement officer or firefighter from another law-enforcement agency or fire department;

(3) At least one member shall be of the same rank as the accused officer...




Charles Town
725-2311x19 recording




Court costs, included in each of the fines below:






Speeding, depends on speed






Driving with expired registration or inspection






Wrong way on 1-way street






Failure to yield right of way






Last changed






If you have two or more offenses at once, you only pay court costs once in the county.

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