In the eight years Valran Venner has been employed with the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s office as a deputy, he has received one written reprimand and dozens of commendations.
Venner, a 31-year-old deputy who was hired in 2005, fatally shot Craig Demps, 22, on April 20. Demps allegedly committed an armed carjacking at a Lake Worth restaurant and then led police on a chase. The chase ended near the West Palm Beach Marriott hotel on Okeechobee Boulevard where he fled into some bushes.
When confronted by deputies, he reached into his waistband to grab an unidentified object. Venner then shot Demps. That object turned out to be narcotics, according to the sheriff’s office.
Venner, who was born in Antigua and became a citizen in 1996, is on paid administrative leave, which is standard procedure.
Two incident reviews involving Venner were conducted in 2011 stemming from an arrest the deputy made. On Aug. 22, 2011, Venner arrested John Shea on a warrant. Shea later complained to the sheriff’s office that Venner did not allow him to carry his wallet which contained money needed to bail himself out of jail. He also complained to the sheriff’s office that Venner did not allow him to wear his shirt or shoes and was treated “unprofessional,” according to the review.
Shea then complained to the sheriff’s office that around $4,500 in cash and checks has been missing since the arrest. Shea told the sheriff’s office that he notified Venner that the money was in the home.
Both complaints were closed and Venner was not disciplined.
In 2007 Venner received a written reprimand after the accident review board found that he failed to use due care when he was responding to a call. Venner was driving the patrol car, with lights and sirens activated, when he cleared two lanes of traffic and was struck by a vehicle while crossing the third lane.
Several people who have come into contact with Venner over the years wrote letters of commendation to the sheriff’s office. One of the letters is from a woman who thanked Venner for arresting someone who was involved in a four-hour standoff at her home on Christmas Day in 2008.
Another letter said Venner was helpful to someone who was hit by a vehicle while riding his bicycle.
Venner in 2010 was awarded the Good Conduct Medal for staying out of trouble for the five years preceding that. He was also awarded the Combat Action Medal in 2012 and the Honorable Service Medal in 2010.