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Hundreds of Richmond County deputies take oath

Friday, Dec. 28, 2012 4:24 PM
Last updated Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012 1:55 AM
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More than 100 Richmond County sheriff’s deputies were sworn in at a Friday afternoon ceremony at May Park Community Center.

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Hundreds of Richmond County sheriff's deputies were sworn in at the May Park gymnasium Friday.  MICHAEL HOLAHAN/STAFF
MICHAEL HOLAHAN/STAFF
Hundreds of Richmond County sheriff's deputies were sworn in at the May Park gymnasium Friday.


The ceremony was the fifth this week, said Sheriff-elect Richard Roundtree, who officially takes office Tuesday.

Richmond County’s more than 700 uniformed officers have to take an oath of office and be deputized every four years, said Patrick Clayton, Roundtree’s chief deputy. With that many personnel working various shifts around the county, it takes several mass ceremonies to do the job, Clayton said. He said the last mass ceremony of about 150 officers will be held Monday morning. Other arrangements will be necessary for any officers unable to attend, he said.

Newly elected Probate Judge Harry James administered the oath, reminding the officers that raising their hand and giving their word was a “sacred thing” not to be taken lightly.

He said a person’s word and their character is all that anyone can carry with them wherever they go.

“Once you give your word, it should be something to be relied on to the death,” James said. “Because in the end, that is all you have.”

Roundtree said that as in years past, Richmond County Board of Education officers and police from the cities of Hephzibah and Blythe were invited to take the oath, allowing them to act as sheriff’s deputies when necessary.

This is the first time, however, the invitation has been offered to campus police officers at Georgia Health Sciences and Augusta State universities, he said.

Clayton said campus police have to go to court to seek state warrants for many common misdemeanor violations such as criminal trespassing. Becoming sworn sheriff’s deputies allows them to issue citations or make arrests under county ordinances.

“It’s the difference between three hours in court or 30 minutes to write a citation,” he said.

Roundtree said he plans to work more closely with campus police and the other agencies in Richmond County that employ certified officers.

“They were thrilled to be asked,” he said. “It really expands your available manpower; it just makes sense.”

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soapy_725
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soapy_725 12/28/12 - 06:40 pm
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Shocking headline.....

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thought these were NEW deputies. Sort of like reciting the Pledge of Allegiance each day. Or taking marriage vows once a year. Maybe this is a good idea. Three per thousand citizens? Where does this concentration compare? North Augusta has 1 per 100? Ludowici has one, period.

grouse
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grouse 12/28/12 - 07:45 pm
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Some dieting might be in

Unpublished

Some dieting might be in order, just looking at the photo...

Riverman1
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Riverman1 12/28/12 - 08:23 pm
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Smart Move By Sheriff Roundtree

I've often said the campus police officers of MCG and ASU should be utilized as both campuses grow and become more spread out over the city. This is especially apt if the GGHOF property is used for student housing. Good move.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 12/28/12 - 09:04 pm
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I wonder if Paine has

I wonder if Paine has certified officers on their campus? That could be a big help, also.

curly123053
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curly123053 12/29/12 - 08:53 am
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Good Idea

When Hunt became Aiken County Sheriff he had the officers of the county's police departments deputized also for the same purpose. It's the same with the USCA and Aiken Tech officers. In fact I have seen Aiken Tech officers running radar and making traffic stops with Aiken County and the SCHP along Highway 1 in front of the school. The more eyes the better I guess. Good move for Sheriff Roundtree!

soapy_725
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soapy_725 12/29/12 - 09:59 am
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A picture says a thousand words......

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Are all of these officers wearing two bullet proof vests under their shirts? Do they have fitness re qualifications annually? Just asking. Lean and mean fighting machines. The boss is setting a good example.

soapy_725
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soapy_725 12/29/12 - 10:20 am
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I do solemly swear to ....

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protect the integrity of court documents, pay my bills and legal obligations, refrain from sexual activities with fellow officers while on duty, arrive at crime scenes with pants properly zipped up, avoid unnecessary trips outside my cruiser, not harass drivers with no tail lights or license plates or minor moving violations, maintain a residence in CC or as near as possible,

GiantsAllDay
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GiantsAllDay 12/29/12 - 11:44 am
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PICTURE CAPTION

Perfect caption for the above picture: "who wants a donut?"

younameit
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younameit 12/29/12 - 03:40 pm
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Amen to the observation that

Amen to the observation that most deputies in this photo are overweight and out of shape. Sheriff Roundtree should implement an aggressive effort to get his deputies in shape - a move that would be so sustainable and revolutionary that other departments would want to emulate it. The payoff in better performance and morale would be measureable.

SON of Scoob
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SON of Scoob 12/29/12 - 07:11 pm
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Krispy Kreme

Classroom as well as physical fitness training took place at the Krispy Kreme campus located on Washington Rd. Most deputy candidates excelled in this portion of their training.

No_Longer_Amazed
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No_Longer_Amazed 12/29/12 - 09:21 pm
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Body Armor ?

Some of those who look overweight may be wearing body armor!

Gage Creed
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Gage Creed 12/30/12 - 12:55 am
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To those commenting on the

To those commenting on the deputies.... I hear there are many openings at the academy for prime specimens such as you!

fatboyhog
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fatboyhog 12/30/12 - 01:58 pm
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Donuts and cops..

hahah...how original! I guess when you lack originality, you resort to the same old tired, worn out, ignorant stereotype. If I had a penny for every time I heard the "want a donut?" crack while in uniform, I could have retired 30 years ago.

Like Gage said, let those prime specimens who throw the funny man barbs go to the police academy and show us how it's done. I'm sure that when an officer shows up when you need help, it won't matter what they look like.

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