Belmont County announces expanded community service program

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BELMONT COUNTY, O.H (WTRF) — A lot of people on the wrong side of the law. But too few spaces in the jail.

It’s a national problem, and Belmont County is seeing it too.

Today they announced an expanded version of their community service program. Offenders will be sentenced to do work for projects that need to be done. And everybody ends up a little better.

Judge Vavra and I will be assigning people do do community service instead of incarceration when applicable and when the community is fully protected.

Judge Frank Fregiato, Belmont County Common Pleas Court

We have a harder and harder time punishing criminal defendants but in this way it does cause them to actually create a benefit to the people they have harmed through their criminal conduct.

Judge John Vavra, Belmont County Common Pleas Court

Probably cleaning up roads, cleaning up the sides of the roads, cleaning up cemeteries, doing things of that nature. Painting town halls, township facilities, things of that nature.

Judge Frank Fregiato, Belmont County Common Pleas Court

It doesn’t cost the county anything. It’s paid for by a state grant secured by Probation Officer Ed Gorrance. So is the the van that will be used to transport the workers.

And the two van drivers are now strangers to law enforcement–retired St. Clairsville police officers Jeff Henry and Richard Fodor.

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