Will help in transition to city department
Herbert Stout is the new sergeant for the Kern County Sheriff's Wasco substation and is excited to take on the role. With 15 years of law enforcement experience, he looks forward to serving the community and helping transition from the Sheriff's Office to establishing the Wasco Police Department.
Stout is a seasoned public safety servant, working as an internal affairs investigator for the Kern County Sheriff's Office. He held that position for two years. Before that, he was a criminal investigator for the Mojave East substation of Kern County.
In 2007, he became a patrol deputy for various Kern County substations for almost 10 years.
He is originally from Tennessee and, shortly after high school, moved to California in 2000, when he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps based in Twentynine Palms. He served for four years.
Stout has a bachelor's degree in criminal justice management from Union Institute and University in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Stout now lives in Bakersfield and says family brought him out here.
Wasco will be new to him, "But I've known Chief Charlie Fivecoat for a couple of years, when he was the chief of police in Shafter."
What he enjoys most about Wasco is that he loves the close-knit community. "It appears everybody knows each other, and the community itself has been very supportive of law enforcement."
He said his time with the Marine Corps was when law enforcement piqued his interest. "I thought law enforcement would be a good way to continue my service."
After his promotion to sergeant, he was assigned to the Wasco substation. "I used to work out of the Buttonwillow substation, and so when I got assigned here, I looked at it as a great opportunity to help with the city and to help with the transition to the new Police Department."
In the sergeant role, he will be responsible for the Sheriff's Office's administrative duties and the city's administrative responsibilities, providing the best public safety to the community while working with the community to enhance public safety, he said.
He will bring assets as the sergeant. "With my patrol experience, since this is a substation, I have a lot of substation experience. With that, you get to be closer to the community. It's easier to build ties and connections."
He has goals. "The first is to learn my role as a sergeant and, at the same time, learn the city's administrative duties. And also continue to build that connection with the members of the city and the stakeholders."
Stout said it is his passion for helping others that keeps him motivated. "I love to help people. Anytime I have the opportunity to help someone, that is my priority."
Regarding challenges he foresees, he said the main shortfall will be maintaining staffing. "The sheriff's office is currently struggling with staffing, and we are working on it. From my sergeant position, that will be my number one concern, to provide the best quality of service to the community."
He plans to attend as many community events as possible to build relationships with the community. "My goal is to get out and do foot patrol; that way, I can meet people, and they will see who the sergeant in Wasco is at the same time."
Eventually, he will oversee a staff of patrol deputies and traffic deputies who cover traffic collisions and investigations, and detectives to investigate the major crimes.
He will work closely with the chief. "The chief and I speak daily, and we express what's going on from both sides, from me to him and from him to me. We have very good communication."