Turning Crime Around
The number one story for all of 2016, as selected by the readers of The Pilot, was the large increase in major crime in Moore County. According to the SBI crime stats, in the last reported year, murder was up 17% in Moore County, burglary was up 12%, and stolen vehicles were up 8%.Since our current sitting Sheriff has been with the Moore County Sheriff Office (the past 10 years), crime in Moore County has increased 20%. 20% rise in crime has become the new norm in our lives and in our infrastructure, but it does not have to be like this anymore. Our current sheriff claims crime has dorpped 22% in the past 10 years. Come on sheriff...look at the physical evidence. If that were the case, our courtrooms would not be so overcrowded. Plus our board of commissioners would not be planning to ask the voters to pass a bond referendum for a new courthouse, and the new jail you so proudly helped design would not be 60% larger than the previous jail. There are counties and towns around North Carolina where the rate of crime has gone down substantially. I have talked to Sheriffs and chiefs of police in successful areas in our state, and I have asked them what they did to bring crime down in their area. Every one gave me the exact same answer, and it is not rocket science. Everyone said you must have heavy patrols, and high visibility in and around all neighborhoods (particularly high crime areas) and businesses. You must become proactive and head crime off before it happens.
Current law-enforcement in Moore County spends way too much time on petty vehicular infractions, and has lost its focus on fighting real crime. You can hardly travel on US 1 North and not see a deputy sheriff sitting in the median running radar. This is what I mean by losing focus. Instead of patrolling the neighborhoods and deterring crime, our deputies are out on the highway playing highway patrolman (which we already pay the Highway Patrol to do). Not only is this a waste of time, effort and money, but it hurts our County's image and economy. A lot of visitors come to our area to play golf, shop in our stores, and spend time with us. Playing Highway Patrolman deters their return, when the first thing they see, is a deputy chasing them with their radar gun and citation book. It is just bad business and misaligned police work.
Under my administration we will seriously refocus our police efforts towards fighting real crime and stop chasing the petty infractions which we are currently focused on. I am going to get law enforcement off the backs of our good citizens, and on the backs of criminals. Not only are we going to substantially increase our visibility, but we are going to get proactive with preventative law-enforcement.