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Sheriff Addresses Tenaha City Council Concerns

Citizens of Shelby County,

April 17, 2017 - This letter is to address the concerns raised at the recent Tenaha City Council meeting.

To answer the question posed by the city council in Tenaha and the Mayor, I will try to show you how the daily operation at the Sheriff’s office works and how officers are scheduled to do the most work for the citizens of the entire county.

The calls received by the SCSO in any area of the county are rotated to the appropriate agency. If any incorporated city in the county does not have an officer available, we will make the call. Center, Tenaha and Timpson are fortunate enough to be able to afford police departments. Each Precinct has a Constable. We have six highway patrol and two game wardens.  The SCSO has two patrol deputies on duty at all times. With six patrol deputies for the entire county, we are reactive to calls. As much as I would love to be proactive to prevent violations, the county budget does not allow for more deputies and unless taxes are raised, we will stay the same.

Everyone works together for the citizens of Shelby County but each have their department. 9-1-1 is answered only at the SCSO and calls are routed accordingly. All officers’ phone numbers are public information if provided by their departments.

There are 1,355 miles of county roads citizens live on in Shelby County and five cities within the county. No one city will be treated any different than the other. The SCSO does and will continue to answer calls throughout Shelby County.

The SCSO answers between 800-1,000 calls for service monthly. The deputies and investigators are working and patrolling 24-hours a day, 7 days a week, holidays included.

The SCSO along with myself, have and will continue to be accountable to the people of this county, all cities included. We always have been.

Sheriff Willis Blackwell

Related article: Tenaha City Council Funds Fire Department Needs; Sheriff's Dept. Patrol Questioned