Once again… combine the VPD & Sheriff’s Dept.?

The decision by Mayor Frank Melton to appoint Hinds County Sheriff Malcolm McMillan to the top job at the JPD brings exciting new possibilities to Vicksburg and Warren County. It turns out that this arrangement has been tried in cities across the country (Las Vegas, Jacksonville, FL, Louisville, KY, etc.). Why not Vicksburg, then, where our city police force is far below its authorized strength, the Chief of Police refuses to enforce certain of our laws, and our crime rate is second only to Jackson… Vicksburg and Warren County, where the sheriff’s department effectively handles its duties with professionalism and courtesy?

Sheriff Pace was quoted in the Saturday Post as giving a resounding “No!” to the possibility that he take over both jobs. But Sheriff Pace is an honorable, civic-minded, dependable officer who would probably accept the challenge if the public were behind him.

How do you react to the possibility? Are you for or against the combination? State whether you are a city or county resident.

Published in: on November 17, 2007 at 10:44 am  Comments (14)  

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14 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Just look at what Mayor Melton did when he appointed Sherrif McMillian to head the Jackson PD. A no says that that this town still has two many divisive issues it doesn’t want to face. There childish attitude toward any form of change,public safety has only created an envoriment which will not attract people to stay at all.

  2. I know Martin will want to wring my neck for saying this, but I think it makes perfect sense for him to take over both departments. He could pick and choose who he wanted on the force, train them the way he wanted, have them walk the tight rope that his deputies walk now, do away with the civil service commission so he would have the same control over the city as he does over the county now, and I would bet we would have a much more effient law enforcement system combined than we have ever had. Sorry, Martin, but I have a lot of faith in you!

    He would have the personnel to handle all of the paperwork properly and he would see that cases were prepared for the District Attorney’s office so that criminals would be taken off the streets.

    So, if Jackson can do it, why can’t Vicksburg? Before when we discussed it, there was all kinds of negative responses of why we couldn’t do it. What say you, now?

  3. I think Martin Pace is a highly qualified individual and feel it would truly be an asset to Vicksburg to combine the VPD and Warren County Sheriff’s Office with him as the Chief!

  4. I feel we would all be safer and Sheriff Pace would clean up this City and keep it that way. He is as good as they come in my opinion..I think with Pace in charge and the new DA we would see a tremendous impact on crime in the city and county. If only this could happen.
    Can we make this happen..

  5. Sorry to say this but at least the Board of Supervisors let Martin run his department. Until you take the politics out of the Police Department, I would have to agree with Martin, why would he want the job.

  6. what has been interesting in Jackson a lot of positive comments came out when Sherrif McMillian took the Jackson Police Department from the smaller community PD heads in Hinds county. Becouse JPD handles some criminal problems in out of the Jackson. Even Edwards gets help from the JPD from time since their on the border with Hinds County. Real interesting eh?
    I believe the real problem with this port is that they believe that things would stay better if they remain the same. But it shows a real weakness of community leaders too: they’re afraid of real change. And people around are hungering for a real change. Now just something cosmetic.

  7. two comments… the sheriff’s department is an elected position, just like the Board of Supervisors… the only interaction the two entities have for most purposes is the budget.

    the police department is one of many departments within the city’s organization. the chief of police has the same status as the head of any other department.

    Edwards is not on the border of Hinds County….. it is within Hinds County and the sheriff has law enforcment authority over it and any other town within the county. In special circumstances, it’s not unheard of for law enforcment personnel in one jurisdiction to assist in another.

  8. In a conversation I had with Sheriff Pace, he indicated that he wouldn’t want a job similar to McMillan’s, due to the fact that McMillan is supervising two different and separate departments. If Vicksburg were to try to combine the sheriff’s dept. and the VPD, the desirable way would be for the city and county to enter into an interlocal agreement whereby the two services would be combined – a metropolitan police service with the same set of rules. This is what I understood Sheriff Pace to say – obviously, he would have to clarify his recommendations himself. I came away with the impression, though, that if things could be worked out to his satisfaction, he might consider the job!

  9. It would certainly serve this city and county if it could be done. I would wager a lot of this crime would stop once the officers got trained properly and knew they had to toe the line.

    By combining the departments, hopefully there could be pay raises for officers and the raises should be allocated by job performance. Policeman and fireman put their lives on the line every day and they should be paid wages that would give people high incentive to want to work in those positions. You get what you pay for…we need the best!

  10. I wonder if we could start a petition drive to ask the city and county to combine the two???

  11. I think the world of Martin Pace.

    Now that we have a new DA I believe the amount of crime will decrease. We have to give the DA enough time to put together his team and get his feet wet. But I assure you that the number of mishandled cases attributed to the VPD will magically decrease. The problem is not with the VPD, it was with the DA’s office.

    Give the new team a chance, if one year from now there is not an improvement then we can think about changing strategies. For now let the process work the way it was designed.

    Now that the broken link in the chain has been fixed the system will work.

  12. I would cetainly sign a petition if you want to start one. It would be great for this community if Martin Pace were over the city and the county law enforcement and he would do a great job. I think things would change drastically in crime reduction.
    We seem to have a lot of turn over in the police dept.The sheriff’s dept does not seem to have this problem. Am I wrong??

  13. Does anyone know how to start an online petition??? Or would hard copy be better???

  14. I believe that both would be terrific. With McMillian now appointed as Police Cheif…maybe we should contact some of the tv stations to see why this port is dead set against this growing trend. It wouldn’t hurt to embarrases someo of our local politicians to show how far behind they really are.

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