Southampton sheriff’s deputies do a good job

Published 9:15 am Saturday, January 29, 2011

To the Editor:

Last summer, driving down Highway 58 westbound just past Capron, a sport utility vehicle passed by me as if I was standing still.

Staring at it in amazement, I shook my head. About a minute later, I noticed a Southampton County sheriff’s car flipping from eastbound to westbound. Living here for most my life, I knew he was going after the sport utility vehicle that passed me.

As I approached the sheriff who had a sport utility vehicle pulled over for speeding, I realized, although they looked much alike, he had pulled the wrong sport utility vehicle. I felt horrible for the driver, who I am sure stated, “But, officer, I was not speeding.”

If I had not been driving with this sport utility vehicle from Franklin and knew he was not the offender, I would have known no different either.

Having my cell phone, I dialed the sheriff’s department and told them the officer who has a sport utility vehicle pulled over for speeding past Capron eastbound was not the one speeding. Not knowing for sure how seriously the dispatcher took me, I decided to turn around to see for myself.

When passing the officer, I was filled with many emotions for he let the driver go. I was never so proud of our sheriff’s department and our county for hiring officers who can admit to a stranger they were wrong. My respect grew leaps and bounds that day.

Admitting something myself, I should have written this letter months ago but always found reasons such as “too busy” or “will later on,” although procrastination was the real reason.

It was Sunday morning when I heard a dispatcher announce on the scanner that a citizen called, stating they witnessed a couple of suspicious persons in a vehicle acting like they were hiding something when they passed a sheriff’s car. Although this does not seem like much to you and me, it was important for the officer to risk his life to listen to a common citizen like you and me and investigate.

Whether anything was found is not important, but what is important is to realize the officers in our county do not take their citizens lightly but listen and acknowledge with humility and courage.

Thank you from all of us.

Tina Tripoli