Vermont DOC launches Corrections Investigative Unit

The Corrections Investigative Unit will lead internal investigations into critical incidents, compliance with federal law, and workplace culture and safety

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Department of Corrections (DOC) this week launched the Corrections Investigative Unit (CIU), a new team charged with conducting internal investigations and improving transparency.

This unit, consisting of a director and two-full time investigators, will investigate critical incidents (e.g., deaths in custody, escape attempts), Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) compliance, threats and safety, intelligence operations, and culture and workplace experiences. 

CIU was statutorily established in 2021 by the Vermont General Assembly to bolster transparency with the public and fill operational gaps within Vermont’s correctional system. 

Per statute, CIU will coordinate with investigative and law enforcement agencies and the Department of Human Resources (DHR). DHR will maintain authority over employee misconduct allegations.

“By design, CIU strives not only to maintain and support the safety of staff and Vermont’s incarcerated population, but also to strengthen public trust in our system,” said Aaron Reichert, CIU Director. Prior to this role, Director Reichert served in various investigative and leadership roles in the law enforcement and human services fields. He most recently served as a Field Supervisor at the Department of Disabilities, Aging, and Independent Living (DAIL).

“Aaron’s robust investigative experience and unique skillset will help us to fully realize and leverage CIU’s mission to improve the safety and wellbeing of those who live and work in Vermont correctional facilities,” said Nicholas J. Deml, Commissioner of the Vermont Department of Corrections. “The establishment of CIU is a major step forward for our department and demonstrates through action our commitment to transparency, integrity, and continuous improvement.”

Source: 2.28.2024. Waterbury, VT – The Vermont Department of Corrections

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