Crime & Courts

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State troopers covering more Augusta accidents

Friday, Nov. 2, 2012 7:29 PM
Last updated 9:52 PM
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The Georgia State Patrol responded to twice as many wrecks as usual in Augusta last month because of a new arrangement with the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office aimed at freeing up deputies for other calls.

In August, the state patrol and the sheriff’s office decided on times of the week where the help would be best used. In September, the two agencies began a four-month trial run, to be analyzed at the end of the year.

“It makes for a stronger law enforcement presence,” state patrol Lt. Donnie Smith said.

Smith said the local state troopers usually work between 50 and 75 wrecks a month.

Last month, they worked about 120.

Other large local governments have made similar arrangements with the state patrol, including Athens, Gainesville and Gwinnett County, Smith said.

“Declining budgets are a reality everywhere,” he said. “We want to help where we can.”

Smith said less money means fewer deputies on the street, and the arrangement keeps deputies from being stuck directing traffic for hours during a wreck investigation.

Sheriff’s Capt. Scott Gay said the partnership has been working well.

The troopers are contacted by Augusta’s 911 center if they carry a Richmond County radio, Smith said. Otherwise, the call is routed to them via the local communications center in Grovetown.

At year’s end, the two law enforcement agencies will review the arrangement, including whether the troopers have met the sheriff’s required response times.

The state patrol will also have to discuss the partnership with the incoming sheriff to see whether it continues, Smith said.

So far, both sides say it has been helpful.

“It frees up the local law enforcement to combat other crimes,” Smith said. “And allows us to do what we do best, which is traffic citations and wrecks.”

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Riverman1
87013
Points
Riverman1 11/02/12 - 08:51 pm
3
1
Patrol Post in Columbia County

Do these patrolmen work out of the Columbia County Post that was built for them or do these people work out of another post?

myfather15
55764
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myfather15 11/02/12 - 11:06 pm
4
0
All Georgia State Patrolmen

All Georgia State Patrolmen in this area worked out of the Grovetown office. The Counties include Richmond, Columbia, McDuffie, Warren and Glascock Counties.

Riverman1
87013
Points
Riverman1 11/03/12 - 07:49 am
3
1
MyFather15, thanks. That's

MyFather15, thanks. That's what I suspected. My point is Columbia County donated the land and built a million dollar patrol post for them and said ticket revenue in the county would increase. That may be true, but it's in the wrong county. Of course Donnie Smith is running for the Richmond County Commission.

soapy_725
43772
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soapy_725 11/03/12 - 08:11 am
1
0
Strange isn't it how candidates names
Unpublished

become government spoke persons at election time. We were flooded with this in the sheriffs race. Accidental. Yea, right. Free publicity. Working the job. Protecting and Serving. Career building.

soapy_725
43772
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soapy_725 11/03/12 - 08:14 am
1
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Just wait until the tax base in ARC totally collapses
Unpublished

and is annexed with CC. The same money men control both counties. Don't think it cannot happen. It will be the "right thing to do". All of the jobs except service jobs are in ARC. All the non service workers are in CC.

soapy_725
43772
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soapy_725 11/03/12 - 08:18 am
1
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Lets get real.....
Unpublished

all of the cruisers show up for every accident. At least in CC. "Flow to the Work" or something. Look Important or Busy?

As the magistrate judge said, they are only road patrol.

Dr_Evil
101
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Dr_Evil 11/03/12 - 09:45 am
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Very "interesting"

It's "interesting" that the state patrol begins "responding" to more accidents in Richmond County now that Smith wants to be commissioner. What ever happened to the "incident" at Wild Wings? The one where he only went to give a friend a "ride"? Was any video reviewed? Who's "story" was corroborated?

storiesihaveread
358
Points
storiesihaveread 11/04/12 - 09:59 am
0
0
I was wonderigng why I saw

More State Troopers doing more traffic calls in Richmond and Columbia County. Riverman1 I have seen them do traffic stops in the City limits of Grovetown and wrecks in Columbia County.

Riverman1
87013
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Riverman1 11/04/12 - 05:21 pm
0
1
Storiesihaveread, they've

Storiesihaveread, they've always done some traffic control in both counties, but apparently this is a new push and arrangement in Richmond County. I wonder why? Smile. An article was written after the new post opened that the number of tickets written by the GA State Patrol did not increase in Columbia County.

Riverman1
87013
Points
Riverman1 11/04/12 - 05:17 pm
0
1
So the question is why

So the question is why Columbia County didn't work out such an agreement? Can someone answer that? It's particularly pertinent since Col. Cty paid for the Patrol Post.

Tullie
2930
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Tullie 11/04/12 - 08:16 pm
1
0
GSP

Funding for the new GSP Grovetown post was made possible through Special Local Option Sales Taxes by the Columbia County Board of Commissioners.

There is even a state-of-the-art radio communications room, which will serve a 22-county region once it goes on line in about two weeks. For the time being only the dispatchers assigned to the GSP Grovetown post will be working radio communications.

Riverman1
87013
Points
Riverman1 11/05/12 - 05:55 am
0
1
So again, why the agreement

So again, why the agreement for an increased presence with Richmond Cty, but not Columbia? Was this something Smith did on his own? Exactly how are these agreements initiated and who are they approved by with the State Highway Patrol?

Tullie
2930
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Tullie 11/05/12 - 07:22 am
1
0
Riverman

Here is a link with Columbia County Commissioners names, numbers, and emails. I would suggest calling him and asking him your questions. That is what I have done when I want to know something specific.

http://www.columbiacountyga.gov/Index.aspx?page=3463

Also here is phone numbers for the Ga State Patrol Commanders. You can call and ask them your questions directly as well.

Troop E Commander's # 478-445-2893

Post 25 Commander's # 706-210-2050

Troop E Communications Center # 706-210-2050

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