St. Joseph County sheriff announces retirement

Southwest Michigan

CENTREVILLE, Mich. (WOOD) — The St. Joseph County sheriff is retiring.

Sheriff Bradley Balk, who has held the position since 2009, announced his decision at a Tuesday night county commission meeting.

Balk will resign effective Jan. 31, nearly a year before his term runs out. In a letter to the county commission, he cited a desire to spend more time with his family.

Balk, 65, has worked with the department for nearly 35 years and is the son of former St. Joseph County Sheriff Neubert Balk.

“I was sworn into the St. Joseph County Sheriff’s Office when I was 18 years old, working for my father on the weekends in the jail. I have had a lifelong connection with this office and feel blessed to have had the opportunity to work for and with so many talented people over the years. The Sheriff’s Office has been an integral part of my life and I will truly miss it and the people,” Balk wrote in the letter.

The Sturgis Journal indicated that current Undersheriff Mark Lillywhite was favored to take over for Balk.

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