On Saturday, I received three separate complaints regarding speeding and reckless driving big trucks in our county. None of the complainants obtained a registration plate number, but they all wanted to report the bad driving. We may believe the complainant, but we must be able to prove the actual driving infraction before we can prosecute anyone. We contacted the quarry to let every driver know we would be closely watching truck traffic so they were advised to slow down and be more careful. We are happy to see anyone making an honest living, but we will not hesitate to write citations to any truck driver who is operating their truck at an unsafe speed or in a reckless manner. Please slow down and be careful.
Last week I attended a conference for Sheriff's from all over Kentucky. We were provided information on many issues confronting law enforcement today. Many issues arise from the problems law enforcement is having in the big cities as a result of diversity of cultures, perceived brutality by a very few officers, changes in the way we perform our jobs and the risks we are forced to take to serve the people. It makes me proud to know we live in such a great county, where there is respect for law enforcement and the officers who work here.
I am so proud of every person who serves at the JCSO! I believe our deputies are top of the line! I struggle to maintaining morale and retain great police officers when they are not properly paid for the difficult jobs they have. Most counties all around us pay from $5.00 to $10.00 more per hour to their officers than we can pay in Jackson County. It is my firm belief that if our police officers are to continue to be highly professional, moral, honest people, they should receive a wage that allows them to have a quality life for them and their families. McDonalds and most fast food chains pay more per hour than I can pay my deputies, particularly my Court Security personnel. Our budget just does not allow us the funds to pay any higher salaries than we currently give our great officers. We will try to find funding to increase their income, but when you see the deputies, please thank them for the work they do. That always goes a long way to improve morale. Thanks in advance.
I recently learned of a new non-lethal tool to assist in the arrest of a violent or our of control person. It is called Bolo Wrap and the tool actually instantly wraps synthetic ropes around the legs or arms of a person, rendering them less dangerous until the officer can place them in handcuffs. The cost ( around $1250.00 per officer) is prohibitive, but we are going to pursue grant opportunities to obtain this new tool. We try to do everything in our power to avoid using injurious physical force to place a person under arrest, while we protect ourselves from imminent danger in a confrontation.
Last week the Jackson County Sheriff's Office responded to one-hundred and twenty-four calls for service. We investigated three traffic accidents, opened two criminal cases and arrested seven individuals on various criminal offenses. We are looking for a certified police officer to replace JR Weaver, who recently resigned to take a job as a McKee PD officer, but quality certified officers are hard to find, particularly when our pay scale is less than surrounding counties. We pray for God's direction and wait to find the right person for the job.
Thank you for your support.