All About the Mission - July 26

Posted By: Sue Parr All About the Mission,

Law enforcement in our community is an important topic so the Chamber took the opportunity at its July Board of Directors meeting to welcome Augusta-Richmond County Sheriff Richard Roundtree and Chief Deputy Patrick Clayton to provide an update on the department. 

Key takeaways for members of the Board included the fact that theft from autos remains the number one crime in the downtown area.  He noted that with the downtown camera plan to be executed next year, surveillance will serve as a primary deterrent.  He also encouraged those members of the Board with downtown restaurants to notify the department when they observe behavior that could escalate.  And, he noted that the best way to deter panhandling is for folks not to be as generous as they would like to be as this perpetuates the problem. 

The lack of an available workforce was also discussed as law enforcement is facing the same shortage challenges as other industries including education and health care.  Augusta Technical College’s tuition-free program was highlighted as an important asset in the region to improve the workforce pipeline and ensure recruitment stays ahead of retirements and departures.  

Sheriff Roundtree highlighted the success of the department’s priority in providing a vast array of personal services to law enforcement personnel in need.  He noted that the department has a designated liaison whose purpose is to assist all personnel with challenges they may encounter as a law enforcement officer. 

Another important takeaway were the services available to all businesses on active-shooter training.  Several board members expressed the desire to have their organizations trained for active-shooter events and they were advised to contact the department.  It was also noted that the Citizens Advisory Board is being reimplemented after the pandemic and represents an important way for the department to receive the necessary community feedback they need.

If your business is facing any particular issues or would like to engage with the RCSO, please let us know and we will get you in the contact with the right people.   It is everyone’s mission to learn all we can about crime prevention and keeping the safety of all citizens a priority.