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The Sheriff’s View #46 for Nov. 10 to 14, 2008
The Sheriff’s View #46 for Nov. 10 to 14, 2008

Sheriff J.B. King
Welcome aboard one more time. It is a cold blustery Sunday with no appeal for a visit outside to check on Mother Nature. For the first time in several column’s I feel lucky to be inside at the computer. We have had a fairly quiet week and I do not have a lot of news to cover. Our call for service/case number count stands at 9,379 this Sunday morning.

I would like to take a moment for a personal note. I would like to say thanks to all the people who cast their vote for me in the sheriff’s race. I will give you the best service that I can with the resources you provide for the sheriff’s department. As the CEO of the department I feel it is my duty to try and advance the department and to build up the department to serve you better. The citizens of Pulaski County deserve the best law enforcement protection that we can deliver.

I have advocated an expansion of the department for the past four years because I firmly believe that the days of two deputies on duty being adequate to serve the needs of the county are over. We need more manpower. The problem is that in order to add more manpower we must increase the revenue available to the county. In other words that dreaded tax word must come forward. I fully understand that at least fifty percent of the people in this county do not want any new taxes. I am not that crazy about a new tax myself. BUT if we are to have the service then we must have the new tax.

During the past four years the idea each January at budget time has been cut the budget, do not try to raise new money. After a period of time this leads to severe problems for the sheriff’s department. The best example is our car program. The county has not put a single penny into the purchase of a vehicle for the sheriff’s department since at least the year 2000. If this does not jump out at you as a major problem then I do not know how to explain it to you. Our problem is that few people want a new tax but everybody wants all the deputies on duty at their house when a problem hits. You want the service but not the cost. The world does not work that way.

My former chief deputy Hondo used to tell me that we needed to adopt the car policy from his native country of Honduras. In many places in Honduras if you want the police to take care of a problem at your house then you send a taxi to the police station at your expense to pick up the officer and deliver him to your house. The officer does his job and the taxi waits until he is done and then returns him to the police station to wait for the next call. You the citizen pay for the entire taxi bill. Somehow I do not see this as our new method of operation. But if our vehicle fleet falls apart I guess this would be an option. Yes, that last sentence was humor.

During the next four years we shall do the best we can with what we have. I understand that we or more accurately I will not please everyone on all calls but we shall try. But I would like to ask that you all have a bit of understanding and compassion for our problems.

In other news this next weekend marks the annual fall firearms deer-hunting season. I can say with confidence that we will get a lot of complaints on the issue of trespass. Under the current Missouri law you must have actual permission to enter onto ANY tract of land to hunt. If you do not have that permission then you are guilty of a crime in every case. If you enter onto a tract of last that has been posted with no trespass signs then the penalty for the crime is much higher because actual notice that you may not enter has been given.

The current Missouri law also allows a landowner to use purple paint on the trees around the boundary of his land to signify a no trespass situation. The purple paint rings have the same legal standing as a written no trespass sign. If you walk past the purple paint onto the land then you are in violation.

The deer season may present a few other problems for us. The lost deer hunter who must be found in the deep woods before he freezes to death. The deer hunter who does the swan dive out of his tree stand onto the ground and must be carried out of the woods. So for those of you who climb trees to hunt please use a safety harness. Deer hunters will have car wrecks rushing to the woods. There will be arguments as to who has the right to use a particular tree stand or a choice location on a ridge. Arguments in the deep woods between men who are armed should be avoided at all times. Whiskey and deer rifles do not mix well so please avoid that problem.

But the worse call we can receive involves the firearm accident. If you have hunted deer for any time then you well know that a .270 rifle or a .30/06 rifle or a .12ga shotgun can blow a very large size hole completely through a deer. Well they will do the same to that hunter on the other side of the field from you. So please wear a lot of hunter orange and be very sure of your target for any shot you might take.

This year Pulaski County has the four-point antler restriction rule in effect. That means your antlered deer must have at least four points on one side of the rack. If you comply with this rule and carefully count the antler points on your target before you shoot then you should not have to worry about the thought of shooting a hole through another deer hunter. Enjoy the hunt but play it safe.

Once again I must close out the column. We as a county are still broke so please take your jail business to some other county that has an LE sales tax. Please play safe and stay legal. But if you fail we will leave the light on for you.

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