Rader Speaks Out On Courthouse Security Controversy
LIBERTY, August 14, 2014 – Attached is a copy of the letter I sent to the 253rd District Judge, Honorable Chap Cain, 75th District Judge, Honorable Mark Morefield and County Court at Law Judge, Honorable Thomas Chambers regarding upcoming changes to Courthouse Security. (County Judge Craig McNair was copied on the letter.)
The Sheriff’s Office is in a “crisis mode”. Our call volume has increased drastically! In 2009 from January 1 to August 12th the LCSO had 8,772 calls. In 2013, my first year in office, the LCSO had 12,063 calls for that same time period. Since January 1, 2014, the LCSO has had 13,247 calls. We are currently handling this call volume with fewer Deputies than what was on Patrol in 2009, due to three of our Deputies being assigned to Courthouse Security. With new subdivisions being built in Liberty County, our population will not only increase, but calls for service as well.
When I received the 2015 proposed budget, it was obvious that the county was unable to fund the extra positions I’d requested. I had to find alternative ways to provide services to the citizens of Liberty County as well as help for my Patrol staff. After careful consideration, I decided to reassign the three (3) Courthouse Security Deputies, not the Bailiffs, to the Patrol Division. This adjustment; although I knew it would not be popular, will keep the LCSO within the proposed budget and help relieve overloaded Patrol Deputies.
The Bailiff’s, Lt. Chad Elmore, Sgt. Robert Harper and Sgt. J.D. Davis will remain in the courthouse with their respective Judge(s). As I’ve stated to the Judges, should they need extra security, it will be provided! I myself have helped out in the courthouse and will continue to do so if needed.
At this point in time, I do not know if this will be a long term adjustment or not. I will of course address any issues/concerns as they arise and make adjustments as warranted.
In closing, I hope you have a better understanding of this situation and will continue to support the LCSO as we make these challenging changes.
The safety of our citizen’s, as well as my staff, is and always has been, my priority!
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