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  • The Augusta Chronicle

    Immediate action on gun violence and other top priorities for sheriff-elect 'Gino Rock' Brantley

    By Alexandra Koch, Augusta Chronicle,

    2024-06-21
    https://img.particlenews.com/image.php?url=03mkPH_0tyc4uBv00

    Augusta sheriff-elect Eugene "Gino Rock" Brantley recently released a detailed list of his top 10 priorities for his first 100 days in office.

    Brantley on Tuesday won a runoff to become the next top lawman at the Richmond County Sheriff's Office. He will take over for 11-year incumbent Sheriff Richard Roundtree in 2025.

    Here are what Brantley said are his immediate priorities, according to a information provided by his campaign.

    Conduct comprehensive audit, stakeholder and employee meetings

    • Comprehensive audit: Perform a thorough evaluation of current resources, personnel, facilities and policies to identify immediate needs and gaps.
    • Stakeholder meetings: Engage with community leaders, local government officials, law enforcement partners and other key stakeholders to understand their concerns and expectations.
    • Employee meetings: Meet with all employees, review their expertise and ensure they are working in an area they care about. Discuss yearly goals and plans to improve morale. Require all personnel to submit resumes, POST training records, current positions, desired positions and career aspirations.

    Immediate action on gun violence, youth engagement

    • Task force: Establish a task force dedicated to addressing gun violence, with a special focus on youth-related incidents.
    • Establish partnerships and obtain grants: Partner with various social groups, federal organizations and local businesses to bring about positive change. Use grants and planned events to assist with partnerships.
    • Youth engagement: Partner with Devon Harris and Full Circle Refuge, Inc. to develop youth mentoring programs. Establish the Sheriff's Athletic League, host community events aimed at preventing youth involvement in violence and gangs, and foster partnerships with local athletic organizations and professionals from Augusta.

    Answer alarm calls efficiently

    • Resource allocation: Develop a strategy to efficiently answer alarm calls without compromising other critical functions. Alarm response by deputies is part of any Community Oriented Policing model, as this puts deputies back in neighborhoods and allows concerns to be addressed prior to problems arising.
    • Community assurance: Work with community members and local businesses to ensure alarm systems are functional and effective. For homes or businesses that have repeated false alarm response, work to solve the issue.

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    Establish a transition team

    • Diverse expertise: Form a transition team comprised of individuals with expertise in law enforcement, community relations, administrative functions and legal affairs.
    • Data gathering: Task the team with gathering data, reviewing current policies and formulating both immediate and long-term action plans.
    • Be accessible and transparent: Hold public meetings, online forums, issue public reports, have data available online and through a new app for easy access. Create various advisory committees and partnerships along with an open-door policy, and a sheriff who is visible in the community.

    Jail improvements, personnel support

    • Facility upgrades: Address critical issues within the jail, such as non-working cell doors, toilets and showers, to improve conditions for inmates and staff.
    • Personnel support: Enhance training and support for jail personnel to ensure a safe and effective working environment. Explore alternatives for immediate staffing needs to ensure the safety of personnel and inmates.

    Implement data driven approaches to crime and traffic safety (DDACTS)

    • Hotspot identification: Use DDACTS to identify crime and traffic incident hotspots.
    • Resource allocation: Strategically allocate resources to hotspot areas to maximize impact on crime reduction and traffic safety.

    Reinstitute traffic division

    • Traffic safety: Focus on reducing vehicle crashes, injuries and fatalities, along with pedestrian injuries and fatalities, through the reinstated traffic division.
    • Collaborations: Partner with the Governor's Office of Highway Safety for additional resources and pursue federal and state traffic safety grants.

    Strengthen community policing efforts

    • Building trust: Enhance community policing initiatives to foster trust and collaboration with residents and ensure police legitimacy.
    • Problem solvers: From leadership down, instill a problem-solver mentality for personnel engaged with residents.
    • Community engagement: Attend events, neighborhood association meetings, downtown development authority meetings, and other relevant meetings across Richmond County.

    Launch targeted recruitment campaign

    • Fill vacancies: Launch a campaign to fill more than 100 vacant positions in the sheriff's office with well-qualified personnel.
    • Diverse channels: Utilize job fairs, social media, partnerships with training academies and other recruitment channels to attract diverse candidates.

    Enhance overall safety in Augusta

    • Comprehensive safety plan: Develop and implement a comprehensive plan to make all of Augusta more safe by addressing various crime types, improving emergency response times and increasing visible police presence.
    • Work closely with 911: Collaborate with 911 to ensure the fastest response time for in-progress calls and that all calls for service are properly taken care of.
    • Community involvement: Collaborate with local organizations, businesses and residents to create a safer environment through joint initiatives and proactive crime prevention strategies.
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