Loyal readers of my column know that I have a hobby horse about the sheriff’s department having so many take home cars. Now we are not talking about the guys that go out on the streets and patrol for traffic violators or
robbers or other nefarious occupations. I don’t have a problem at all with them having a free ride after hours. But guess what? They don’t get a take home car. They have to share their patrol car with other shifts. They have to get in it after someone else has stunk it up with hamburgers,
smoke (they are not supposed to) or other stuff we are not going to talk about right now.
I periodically go on rants about this situation.
No, the people who get the take home cars are the detectives, patrol sergeants, field training officers, ID people, Kids and Kops, Academy ranking officials, command staff, and the sheriff, in other words anyone that is a sergeant or above--except in the jail where they
have to be a lieutenant or above.
Not only do they get a free car for after hour use, they get free gas, batteries, tires, oil changes, insurance--a car, and anything that has to do with the operation of an automobile.
Many of these people with county furnished rides work from 8 to 5, although their claim for the necessity of a car is that they have to get up in the middle of the night and make crime scenes.
You will read on the front page of this newspaper a situation where the sheriff’s department received grant money to purchase two cars and chose to purchase a couple of $28,000 Dodge Chargers with sun roofs. The normal take home car, a police package Crown Victoria costs
about $22,000. Commissioner James Patterson must have grown a pair because he was the only commissioner to vote against the measure.
This is almost an exact duplicate of an auto purchase by the sheriff’s department several years ago when they used their grant money to buy a couple of muscle cars for the Academy. Their excuse at the time was that newbie patrolmen needed to learn how to chase a powerful
car. Yeah, right. The super cars ended up in the possession of the Academy head Mike Patton and Chief Deputy Craig Brady, neither of whom really participate in teaching young patrolman how to chase a super car. In fact, both men drive their cars to work, park them outside, and except
for going to eat lunch, pretty much leave their cars in the parking lot.
It is rumored that Brady, who says he is running for Sheriff, will get the new expensive car. Since he already drives a Dodge Charger (he traded off his BMW the week he decided to run for sheriff), who’s going to know?
Sheriff Howdy Doody is seldom at commissioner court meetings, fearful they will ask him something which he ususally knows nothing about. If commissioners want information from him, they ask the question in open court and Sheriff Howdy Doody Wright has until the next meeting
to school himself on the answer.
Here are pictures of boh Howdy Doody and Milton Wright. See if I’m right.