To the Editor:
Since I was first elected in 2006, the Anderson County Sheriff’s Department has implemented many changes and programs to better serve the citizens of Anderson County.
The Sheriff’s Department was reorganized to be more efficient and more effective. Emphasis has been placed on enforcement for the prevention, detection, and investigation of crimes. This reorganization has placed more deputies on patrol and investigating crimes, resulting in more arrests and crimes solved.
We have focused the efforts of the Anderson County Sheriff’s Department on drug enforcement and in reducing property crimes such as burglary and theft. These efforts have paid off as overall crime numbers have fallen and are continuing to decrease.
Crime prevention programs such as Neighborhood Watch were reinstated and a dedicated crime prevention officer works hand-in-hand with the community to help in reducing crime.
The Sheriff’s Department is using technology for not only crime prevention and investigation but to also be more efficient. Deputies now have laptop computers in patrol cars that allow them to remain out in the community to fill out reports.
The department is now using crime mapping and analysis to identify areas where crimes are occurring. Deputies are made aware where burglaries and thefts are happening, so extra patrols are done in these neighborhoods.
We have formed close relationships with local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies. These relationships have resulted in numerous joint investigations both for illegal drug activity as well as the investigation of burglaries and thefts.
Working with the Anderson County Board of Education has allowed eight sheriff’s deputies to be assigned as school resource officers in our county school system. These SROs work every school day to protect our students and staff.
The Sheriff’s Department has reinstated DARE classes to the fifth-grade students in the Anderson County Schools and to the fifth- and sixth-grade students at the Clinch River Community School.
The most recent partnership is with the District Attorney’s Office and the Anderson County, Clinton, and Oak Ridge school systems in a program designed to protect our children from online predators.
These successful efforts in reducing crime are from the hard work and dedication of the men and women serving with the Anderson County Sheriff’s Department, and they are to be commended for all they do each and every day.
Anderson County has been home for my entire life. I was born and raised in the Blowing Springs community. I attended elementary and high school here. I have worked here all my life from the coal mines in New River to managing Oak Ridge Marina. I have served as a law enforcement officer since 1975, with the last 34 years as a proud member of the Anderson County Sheriff’s Department.
Being an Anderson County resident my entire life has also served me well in knowing and understanding the needs of the county and of the Sheriff’s Department.
Serving as your Sheriff for the last eight years has been an honor and a privilege. I wish to thank the citizens of Anderson County for their trust and support. I will continue serving Anderson County with the high standards of honesty and integrity they expect and deserve.
I ask for your support and vote in the upcoming general election. I will continue these crime-fighting efforts and will work even harder to make Anderson County a safer place to live, work, and visit.
Anderson County Sheriff Paul White