Despite Budget Cuts, Muskogee County Sheriff Vows To Remain Proactive
MUSKOGEE COUNTY, Oklahoma - There's a new sheriff in town in Muskogee County, and he’s coming into office with a large budget cut.
Sheriff Rob Frazier said he’s making money-saving changes, but patrols will stay up.
Muskogee County deputies patrol all over - from the busy highways to the rural dirt roads.
Lieutenant Deshayn Wilson is the shift commander, and in a couple of days he'll be putting in new patrol districts across the county.
"This is one of the areas where a lot of people have said they don't see deputies that often, and that's part of the district thing, is trying to make to where the deputies are more visible in areas where people are complaining and saying they don't see deputies," Wilson said.
Frazier said the new districts he's creating will help save his department money.
In an effort to balance the county budget, commissioners cut around $400,000 from the sheriff's office.
"That helps man power issue. We're going to put the officer's in districts so, therefore, we think it's going to save on fuel, but it's also going to be a crime deterrent. It's going to be people out in certain areas that are going to be designated to that area, and also, we think the citizens are going to like it because they're going to see a lot more of the deputies out," the sheriff said.
Frazier said deputies will also move to 12-hour shifts, but, the new sheriff insists nothing will change with the way his office keeps the citizens of Muskogee County safe.
"Money can't keep you from being proactive,” he said. “We're gonna continue to be proactive."
For Wilson, he knows the patrol districts will cut down on crimes.
"Just us driving by, if you've got somebody that's thinking about doing something and they see a law enforcement vehicle go by, that may be enough to change their mind and you may have stopped something you never knew anything was going to happen," he said.
And the new patrol districts and the new 12-hour shifts are expected to start this weekend.