New County Sheriff substation opens in Vienna

MD-Sheriff substation opens in Vienna_3x

Dorchester Banner/Paul Clipper
Sheriff James Phillips and members of the Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office, Mayor Russell Brinsfield and citizens of Vienna, and the Dorchester County Chamber of Commerce, cut the ribbon on a new sheriff’s office substation at 109 Market St. in Vienna.

VIENNA — Sheriff James Phillips and members of the Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office, along with Mayor Russell Brinsfield and citizens of the town of Vienna, and the Dorchester County Chamber of Commerce, cut the ribbon on a new sheriff’s office substation at 109 Market St. in Vienna, on April 1. The new substation, paid for entirely by donations, will give the sheriff’s office a new permanent presence in Vienna and South Dorchester, and a welcome addition to the town, according to local residents.

“Just having that sign out front,” said one townsperson at the ribbon cutting, “will make people stop and think. That’s a deterrent right there.”

This is going to help us establish more of a presence in the area,” said Sheriff Phillips at the ribbon cutting. “But more importantly it’s showing we have a continuity with the community, because this project was paid for entirely by funds donated within the community.
This is the epitome of what community policing is — you have a community that wants us to have a presence here, and they’re willing to come forward and do this at their own expense.
It’s a win-win for everybody involved, and it’s going to give us a location where deputies, when they’re in this part of the county, can stop in, catch up on paperwork, and just be available to any townspeople who need them. It’s not often you have someone say ‘come here, and It’s not going to cost you anything.’ That’s a very generous offer and opportunity presented by the people of Vienna.”

“This is an unbelievable day for Vienna,” said Mayor Brinsfield. “This is something we’ve been working on for several years — how to get more police presence in town. We had the gift of this building, and a group of concerned citizens came together and did all the work. What’s really nice about this is that there were no town taxpayer dollars put into this office. All of the furniture, the building, the renovation has been donated. We’re very excited about it.”

Spokesman Justin Hoffman noted there are numerous volunteers involved with this project. Property owners Paul Rhymer and Carolyn Thome donated the building to the town, and a long list of local folks donated money to the cause, including Chaney Enterprises, Hebron Savings Bank, Hoffman Irrigation, Layton’s Chance, AIM Transport, Bunky’s, Vienna Food Mart, Greg Whitten Insurance, Chicone Ruritan Club, Shadibook Farms, Russell Baker Jr., Phyllis Murphy, Chuck and Erica Kropp, Kenneth Simpler, Edwin Lewis and Karen and Mark Priess.

Labor and materials for the renovation of the building were donated by S & K roofing, Koski Electric, Mr Pietras’s Vo-Tech class, Jamie McFarland, Jimmy McFarland, Cindy McFarland, Jamie Nichols (Nichols Lawn Care in East New Market), Paul Adams, Lynn and Frank Fluharty, Chuck Kropp and Bill Larimore. “We couldn’t have done it without the help of all these folks,” said Justin Hoffman, speaking at the ribbon cutting.

“The people of Vienna are way too modest for what they’ve accomplished here,” said Sheriff Phillips. “When Bill Larrimore first called me and asked if I would like to have a substation in Vienna, I said ‘I’d love to have a substation in Vienna. I’d love to have one in every small town in the county, but how much is it going to cost me?’ He said, ‘nothing!’ and I said, ‘Okay, now you’ve got my attention.’

“Through their efforts, it just goes to show the synergy that can be created when folks work together and cooperate to get something accomplished. Our deputies and troopers, instead of having to run to Cambridge every time, we’ll be able to keep them in their patrol areas. It’s going to be a win for us because we’re going to burn less gas and be out in the county, plus we’re going to have a greater presence in the town of Vienna and the surrounding areas. I can’t thank you all enough for this.”

The small manufactured block building on Market Street was originally used as a business office for one of the tomato canning factories in the town. Vienna celebrates its tomato heritage each year at the Great Eastern Shore Tomato Festival in August.

Mayor Brinsfield noted that approximately $15,000 was raised to complete the project, at which point one of the volunteers said, “And we could use a few bucks more to finish it, if anyone’s interested!”

Paul Clipper is the editor of the Dorchester Banner. He can be reached at

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