Chief Vincent Balbo began his law enforcement career in 1979, as a uniformed Lake County Sheriff’s Department Police Officer and served in several different duty assignments to include the Patrol Division, Tactical Unit, and Detective Bureau.  As a Detective, Balbo was assigned to the Hammond Indiana Office of the Drug Enforcement Administration as a Federal Task Force Officer in 1987. 

In 1989, Balbo left the Lake County Police Department and was sworn in as Special Agent with the Drug Enforcement Administration. Over the next ten years he initiated and developed complex drug investigations with DEA State and Local Task Forces, targeting drug trafficking organizations operating across the Northern District of Indiana and the Chicago Metropolitan Area.

Balbo was promoted to the position of DEA Group Supervisor, responsible for supervising the investigative activities of Enforcement Groups in the Chicago Division Office, Merrillville Resident Office, and the Indiana HIDTA Task Force Offices.

In 2005, As a Group Supervisor, Balbo was designated to lead a DEA Foreign-deployed Advisory Support Team (FAST). This FAST Team was comprised of DEA Agents, whose mission was to train counter-narcotics police officers in Afghanistan, assist them in their pursuit of opium traffickers, and to coordinate their enforcement operations with U.S. and International Coalition Forces. 

Balbo was promoted to the position of Assistant Section Chief of the Foreign-deployed Advisory Team (FAST) Program which expanded its mentoring and enforcement program into the Caribbean Region.

Balbo later returned to Afghanistan as the DEA Kabul Country Attaché; and the DEA Middle East- Assistant Regional Director, responsible for directing DEA’s rule of law/narcotics training mission and joint counter-narcotics operations with the Counter Narcotics Police Afghanistan (CNP-A). 

In October 2008, Balbo returned to the DEA Chicago Field Division as an Assistant Special Agent in Charge (ASAC) and was responsible for the Administrative and Enforcement Operations of the DEA Chicago Field Division, the Chicago Strike Force, and the Chicago HIDTA Groups.  Balbo also served as the acting Associate Special Agent in Charge for two years, retiring in 2016.   

On his DEA retirement in July 2016, Balbo was hired as the School City of East Chicago (SCEC), Director of Security and School Safety, responsible for school safety programs and security operations, until his return to the Lake County Sheriff’s Department on January 06, 2020.

Chief Balbo is a graduate of Highland High School, and received a Certificate of Criminology from the College of St. Joseph, and his Bachelor’s Degree in Public Administration from Indiana University Northwest.


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