Berrien County Mounties dominate at statewide competition


The Berrien County Sherriff’s Mounted Division took home multiple 1st place trophies en route to the overall points trophy at a competition against mounted divisions across the state of Michigan.

The Michigan Sheriffs Mounted Association held its 62nd annual Fall Campout Competition, September 16th-18th in Reed City. Berrien County Sheriff Mounted deputies competed against deputies from various Sheriff’s Offices in Michigan, in this annual fraternal competition, hosted this year by the Osceola County Sheriff’s Posse.

The Berrien County Sheriff’s Mounted Division was represented by Sgt. Tom Fogarty Jr, Deputy Jim Fogarty, Deputy Pat Corteville, Deputy Shannon Utt, and Deputy Cody Utt. Deputies competed in a variety of horseback events, which test each deputy’s speed and precision on their horse. Events also require deputies to work in tandem, with a teammate, in mounted relays, and pistol marksmanship.

Berrien County Sheriff’s Mounted deputies took several top placings in horseback events, including speed n’ action, flag and barrel competition, and cloverleaf barrel competition; as well as 1st place in a 3-member mail-bag relay event. In all, Berrien County’s overall team took 1st place in speed n’ action, 1st place in the flags competition, 1st place in the barrels competition, and 1st place in the 3-man-relay. This made the BCSO Mounted team the highest point team at the event; and, the BCSO Mounted team was awarded the traveling trophy as the high point team of the Michigan Sheriffs Mounted Association.

On day three of the event, BCSO deputies had several 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place finishes in several pistol marksmanship and combat shooting events. Awards were also given for shooting and riding cumulative scores. Sgt. Tom Fogarty took 1st place in the A-Division for shoot & ride, Deputy Jim Fogarty took 1st place in the C-Division for shoot & ride, Deputy Patrick Corteville took 1st place in the D-Division shoot & ride, and Deputy Shannon Utt placed 2nd in the D-Division for shoot & ride.

The BCSO Mounted deputies all had a great time at the weekend event, and were very proud to represent the Berrien County Sheriff’s Office and its Mounted Unit. BCSO Deputies were able to meet Mounted Unit and Posse members from several other Michigan Sheriff Offices, which has opened the door for joint training opportunities, and resource sharing among units.

Sheriff Bailey and the Sheriff’s Office are proud of our Mounted Division’s showing at this event, and for the way in which they continue to serve and volunteer their time for the betterment of the citizens and visitors of Berrien County. The Berrien County Sheriff’s Mounted Division is a unit comprised of sworn deputies, who volunteer their time, animals, and equipment, in service to the mission of the Berrien County Sheriff’s Office. The Michigan Sheriffs Mounted Association is comprised of equestrian, search & rescue and reserve units from 14 Michigan Sheriff’s Offices, totaling over 200 members statewide.

For more information about the Berrien County Sheriff’s Mounted Division, please contact Lt. Ryan Sullivan at