Over 11k calls in 2019

Published 1:55 pm Monday, February 10, 2020

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Polk County Sheriff’s Office gives annual report

COLUMBUS—Calls for service for the Polk County Sheriff’s Office were up by 10 percent in 2019 compared to 2018. 

Polk County Sheriff Tim Wright presented an annual report to the Polk County Board of Commissioners on Monday night that compared 2019 to 2018. Wright took office in December 2018. 

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Wright spoke to commissioners, as well as sheriff’s office attorney and public information officer J.J. Sauve, who went over statistics for the year. 

The sheriff’s office answered 11,632 calls for service in 2019, compared to 10,568 in 2018, which was a 10.07 percent increase, according to the report. 

Commissioner David Moore said that is an average of 44 calls per day, which is probably putting a strain on some areas. 

Sauve said officers are not just sitting at the office and are pretty busy. He said he saw a report for the Asheville Fire Department recently who responded to 19,000 calls in the year, which is in a big city compared to Polk County responding to 11,000 calls in a year. 

Offenses investigated were 1,358 in 2019, compared to 1,288 in 2018, which was a 5.43 percent increase. 

Arrest charges were 1,003 in 2019 and 834 in 2018, which was a 20.26 percent increase in a year. 

Warning tickets, security checks, lobby walk-ins/calls, animals picked up, animal bite reports, inmates transported out of county, professional training hours and evidence items disposed by court order were not tracked in 2018, according to Sauve. 

Sauve said the sheriff’s office had 10,983 lobby walk-ins/calls in 2019, which the sheriff’s office just began recording in March 2019. 

The crime summary included two homicides in 2019 and 2018; one kidnapping/abduction in each year; three sex offenses in 2019 compared to five in 2018; five robberies in 2019 compared to zero in 2018; 65 assaults in 2019 compared to 66 in 2018; two arsons in 2019 compared to three in 2018; 86 burglary/breaking and entering in 2019 compared to 81 in 2018 and 170 larceny/thefts in 2019 compared to 210 in 2018, according to the report. 

Drugs and narcotic offenses increased 50 percent in one year, with 345 offenses in 2019 compared to 230 offenses in 2018, according to the report. 

Weapons law violation, with the most common being possession of a firearm by a felon, were up 75 percent in one year, with 21 violations in 2019 compared to 12 violations in 2018, according to the report. 

“I want you to know that it is an honor to go over these things we have implemented and plan on implementing this year,” Wright told commissioners. “I thank you for your partnership.” 

Wright also thanked county manager Marche Pittman for his work with the sheriff’s office. Wright said he is at the Womack building at least on a weekly basis and every issue that needs addressing he comes to Pittman for his expertise on how to handle the situation. 

“We’re here for the same reason,” Wright said. “To work together and make this county the best it can be. That is my goal.” 


Polk County Sheriff’s Office statistics


Type 2019 2018

Calls for service 11,632 10,568

Offenses investigated 1,358 1,288

Arrest charges 1,003 834

Citation charges 410 517

Warning ticket charges 54 N/A

Civil papers 894 853

Criminal papers 311 382

Security checks/extra patrol 4,280 N/A

Lobby walk-ins/calls 10,963 N/A

Animal control total calls 1,361 988

Animal ordinance citations 72 62

Animals picked up 327 N/A

Animal bite reports 52 N/A

Inmates booked 1,222 900

Inmates transported out of county 498 N/A

Inmates housed for other counties 147 48

Inmate housing payments to PCSO $291,153 $36,065

Landscape hours by DCCO personnel 370 248

Professional training hours 5,110 N/A

Evidence items disposed by court order 788 N/A


Crime summary


Offense type 2019 2018

Homicides 2 2

Kidnapping/abduction 1 1

Sex offenses 3 5

Robbery 5 0

Assaults 65 66

Arson 2 3

Extortion/Blackmail 0 0

Burglary/breaking and entering 86 81

Larceny/theft 170 210

Motor vehicle theft 33 19

Counterfeiting/forgery 3 3

Fraud 22 33

Embezzlement 0 1

Stolen property 8 13

Destruction/damage/vandalism 39 32

Drugs/Narcotics offenses 345 230

Weapon law violations 21 12