Owyhee County Sheriff Perry Grant warns that a security group calling itself The United State of Idaho is forming in the county and may be misleading the public on its role as enforcement officers.
"There is a constitutionalist or sovereign citizen-type group that is forming in Owyhee County and has no affiliation with the Owyhee County Sheriff's Office or Posse," Grant said. "I would like to remind people that impersonating an officer is a felony in the state of Idaho."
The group is posting fliers titled "Join the Owyhee Posse" and calls itself a militia/constitutional security force. It advertises areas of concentration as: civil defense, disaster preparedness and security for local events.
The flier also says that members are responsible for their own equipment and uniforms. The group lists only an email address with no phone number, and says a website is being constructed.
The group further advertises that it seeks the following skills and talents: emergency response, observation, reporting, ham radio, crowd control, community events and legal use of force.
According to an Internet search, the group's domain name belongs to Terry Yohn, who lives on Wright Road near Givens and has a physical address of Melba.
Yohn told The Owyhee Avalanche on Monday that when he talked to Grant last year, the then-sheriff's candidate indicated to him that at least another 150 volunteers were needed to help law enforcement.
On Monday, Grant said he never led Yohn to believe that any kind of organization such as his was needed.
Yohn justified the necessity of his watch group Monday, explaining that people in Owyhee County are scared.
"There's a lot of young bucks running around with AR-15s and going beyond what is responsible in defending themselves, and I felt a watch group such as ours was needed," Yohn said.
Yohn said his group includes "a lot of people," and that a meeting is planned but no time or place has been set.
Grant said that anyone approached by a person they think is falsely claiming to be with law enforcement should report it to 911.