Texas Sheriffs Today
Feb. 6, 2015

Life-saving tips: Are you up for the challenge?
Society has become increasingly violent and guns play a large role in that violence. The days when an officer can boast he never drew his weapon during his career are long gone. Not only are more officers drawing their guns, but more are forced to fire them. The advent of dash cams, and now body cams, has shed more light on identifying threats and the importance of tactics when engaged in a gun battle. It's always a good idea to keep these life-saving tips in short-term memory for easier access.More

DeWitt County Sheriff's Office places body-worn cameras in service
DeWitt County Sheriff's Office
DeWitt County Sheriff Jode Zavesky has purchased and placed into service body-worn cameras (BWC). Each deputy will be issued the BWC to be utilized while on patrol.

The DeWitt County Sheriff's Office has adopted the use of the BWC to accomplish several objectives. The BWC will allow for accurate documentation of deputy-public contacts, arrests and critical incidents. They will also serve to enhance the accuracy of officer reports and courtroom testimony. Audio and video recordings also enhance the sheriff's office ability to review probably cause for arrest, officer and suspect interaction, officer and citizen interaction, as well as evidence for investigative and prosecutorial purposes and to provide additional information for officer evaluation and training.

The 12 BWC were purchased using the DeWitt Sheriff's Office seizure fund. These are funds that were seized by the sheriff's office and forfeited to the department from drug and other illegal activity. According to Zavesky, the recent incidents occurring around the nation prompted him to evaluate cameras and make the purchase. This will help protect the deputies and ensure that the citizens they come in contact with are treated fairly.More

Bastrop County deputy finds woman dead in parking lot
VideoBrief The Bastrop County Sheriff's Office and Texas Department of Public Safety are investigating after a woman was found dead in a Bastrop parking lot about 2 a.m. Wednesday. A patrolling deputy found the woman's body lying next to a late model black Dodge Charger, with one of its doors open, the sheriff's office said.More

3 arrested after chase involving stolen SUV
Three people were arrested after leading Dallas County sheriff's deputies on a chase with a stolen SUV. Raul Reyna with the sheriff's office said in a release that a detective with the North Texas Auto Task Force was called just before 10 a.m. Wednesday to the Mountain Valley Apartments on Mountain Valley Lane in Dallas to investigate a stolen black GMC Terrain SUV.More

Harris County deputy to serve with turban and beard, continue efforts to bolster cultural diversity
A Sikh-American Harris County Sheriff's Office deputy will now be able to wear articles of his religion while on duty. Sheriff Adrian Garcia announced on Monday that six-year HCSO veteran Sandeep Dhaliwal will be allowed to wear a dastaar and beard when in full uniform. Both are articles of faith of the Sikh religion.More

Manhunt suspect in Hill Country chase arrested
VideoBrief The man wanted for firing at an officer during a chase in the Hill Country late Tuesday has been captured. Llano police say 26-year-old Clinton Beau Gaylord was arrested Thursday in the small San Saba County town of Cherokee. Authorities say he was taken into custody without incident. Central Texas authorities had been looking for Gaylord since he fled from police during a traffic stop about 11:30 p.m. Tuesday, along State Highway 71 on the west side of Llano.More

When police deal with people in crisis
When police misread the circumstances of encounter with an individual with mental health crisis, the possibility for violence rapidly escalates. The only solution is for law enforcement to try to stabilize every encounter, to the extent possible, as if it involved psychiatric disability. As a nation, we are in the midst of an extended conversation about police violence, and this case stands out as unusual. The victim was white and female, for one thing. Moreover, ugly use-of-force incidents usually result from police being too quick to escalate, rather than too slow. More

Helping military veterans avoid the criminal justice system
By Mark Bond
The Veterans Administration reports that 1 in 5 U.S. military combat veterans has shown symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. Our nation has yet to see the full extent of what 13 years of war has done to these combat veterans' long-term mental health. Our nation has asked these warriors to go to war to fight terrorism and bring the fight to the enemy in their own front yard. Now that they have returned from war and are resuming their civilian lives, they still carry the invisible scars of facing war.More

Commentary: Privacy could be the victim if police body
cameras aren't more hack-proof

The Christian Science Monitor
President Barack Obama's request that Congress spend $75 million to outfit police with body cameras after the Michael Brown shooting reflected a consensus that the technology will provide a clear record of interaction between the public and law enforcement. But while civil rights and police groups agree that video can protect citizens and officers, the security within these systems needs to be addressed long before some 50,000 police strap cameras to their uniforms.More

Crowdfunding helps Califronia police dog fight cancer
People from around the world have rallied to help a small town California police dog recover from cancer. The Sebastopol Police Department has 12 officers, plus their police dog named Frank. Frank was diagnosed with lymphoma about two weeks ago, and veterinarians have told the department treatment for the cancer would cost about $10,000. More