On the 22nd of January 2014 EMS was summoned to the Sherman County Bastille for an inmate in medical distress. Upon arrival they transported the prisoner, Brenda Sewell 58 year old female from Kansas City Missouri, to Goodland Regional Medical Center where she was pronounced dead.  At this time as is typical in cases like this the investigation was immediately turned over to an outside agency. Currently the Goodland Police Department is investigating and the Kansas Bureau of Investigation has been notified. The prisoner was arrested on the 20th of January 2014 by the Kansas Highway Patrol.  No further comments will be made pending the results of autopsy and outside investigation.

Update January 24, 2014

The Sherman County Sheriff’s Office believes that proper procedure was followed in the confinement, treatment and care of Brenda Sewell.  There is an independent investigation taking place into the death of Ms. Sewell and we will fully cooperate in that investigation and let the investigation run its course.  At this time the Sheriff’s Office will have no further comment.


For the second time in three days the Sherman County Sheriff’s Office and Goodland Police Department along with the Kansas Bureau of Investigation have served a narcotics related search warrant in Sherman County. 

In the morning hours of January 15, 2014 officers and deputies developed information that illegal drugs were allegedly being sold from an address on the 400 Block of Cherry in Goodland. Subsequently a search warrant was issued and executed on the residence. The male occupant of the residence was arrested and transported to the Sherman County Bastille. This search warrant is part of the recent counter drug effort being conducted by local law enforcement. 

Sheriff Pianalto said, “This continued effort is by no means over, we will continue to make every effort to eradicate illegal drugs from our community.”

   On Saturday, January 11, 2014 the Goodland Police Department and Sherman County Sheriff’s Office served a search warrant at the 500th block of West 9th St. This warrant was in reference to information indicating that illegal narcotics were being sold from this residence. Officers and Deputies located various drug paraphernalia and illegal narcotics during the search warrant. Two individuals were arrested in connection with the search warrant. 

   This operation was part of a larger counter-drug effort currently being conducted by local law enforcement agencies. Chief Couch of the Goodland Police Department said “we are proud to work with our colleagues at the Sheriff’s Office to help address this problem affecting our jurisdictions. We will continue working to make Goodland a horrible place for drug dealers to operate.” 
Sheriff Burton Pianalto said “Our main focus has been the dealers of illegal drugs including Methamphetamine, Diverted Prescription Medication, and Marijuana. These individuals prey on the addicted to make money. Cooperation between the public and Law Enforcement is vital to building successful case against these predators. A note about Marijuana: The Law has not changed in Kansas; you cannot possess marijuana of any Quantity. Once you cross that state line, Kansas Law applies, Not Colorado’s.”

Release produced by Chief of Police Clifton Couch

   On January 10, 2014 a joint law enforcement operation came to a close in Goodland, Sherman County Kansas. The joint investigation has been ongoing for the past 6 months where members of the joint operation, Kansas Bureau of Investigation, Sherman County Sheriff’s Office, and the Goodland Police Department, conducted an extensive investigation into the distribution and possession of illegal narcotics to include marijuana and methamphetamine.

   The culmination of the six month investigation resulted in the issuance of 18 arrest warrants for individuals living in and around Goodland for felony offenses associated with the distribution and possession of illegal drugs. As a result of the joint efforts, fifty percent of the issued warrants have been executed and efforts are continuing to bring the remaining balance to a logical conclusion. 

Due to ongoing efforts no names are being released, pending their first appearance in Sherman County District Court.

Release produced by Special Agent in Charge Kelly Ralston, KBI

 On December 26, 2013 at 1046 HRS Sherman County Deputies were dispatched to a report of a man standing on the bridge railing at the 17 milepost on I70. Deputy’s arrived about 2 minutes later and determined that the man was suicidal. Several Deputies’ and a passerby tried to talk the man down from the bridge railing. After 10 minutes the 41 year old man was subdued and taken into custody without incident. Quick response from Sherman County Sheriff’s Deputy’s, Goodland Police Department, Kansas Department of Wildlife Parks and Tourism and the Good Samaritan are the reason that this situation ended without loss of life. This incident did result in the closure of I70 at mile marker 17, the Goodland exit and K27 at mp 170 for a short period of time.

 Holidays are a tough time for some and this incident serves as a reminder to take time to talk with your loved ones and report any unusual behavior. If you are the one who needs help you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1800-273-TALK.


Additional information