Law enforcement commended

Published 9:46 am Friday, June 15, 2012

Our local law enforcement agencies have a tough job. Each day the dedicated officers in each department put their health and safety on the line to keep us safe.

We sometimes forget the sacrifices they make on a daily basis to handle these high stress jobs, but news Wednesday that crime levels in Western Tidewater have dropped significantly shouldn’t go unnoticed or unappreciated.

An annual report from the State Police showed that crime dropped 12 percent from 2010 to 2011.

Isle of Wight County saw the biggest drop at 17 percent, followed by Franklin at 10 percent and Southampton County at eight percent.

The city also experienced a 14 percent increase in drug arrests from 89 in 2010 to 104 in 2011, which is a contributing factor in the drop in crime, according to FPD Lt. Tim Whitt.

These departments are also short-handed, making this feat even more remarkable.

Franklin has 26 of its allowed 30 sworn officer positions filled. Isle of Wight County Sheriff Mark Marshall says he’d like to have more than the 43 officers for his department as well.

Despite the number of officers on the street, the members of these departments clearly give it their all on a day-to-day basis to make sure residents are safe and we admire them for that service.