House reviews police activity

Posted 9/4/18

CARBON HILL - The Carbon Hill City Council heard a report from Police Chief Eric House on Thursday on how activity within the department is better reported and on the increase. House give a …

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House reviews police activity


CARBON HILL - The Carbon Hill City Council heard a report from Police Chief Eric House on Thursday on how activity within the department is better reported and on the increase. 

House give a report ranging from Jan. 1 to Aug. 26. The department had 378 incident and offense reports, although no comparable numbers from 2017 were available because reports were not being submitted, House said. 

The department had 25 accidents, not counting two on the interstate, with varying records in different books making it unable to determine. On citations to date, the city recorded 511, versus 163 for the same period in 2017. 

A total of 198 arrests were made for this year so far, while in 2000 it was 100. 

"We're already doubled on our arrests, and probably 92 perent of those arrests this year I know are drug related. You can directly link them back to straight-out drugs," he said/ "We're still not finding quantity on drugs. 

"We're finding paraphernalia because these people are not letting people buy the dope and take it with them. They are buying the dope and watching them use it or smoke it. So that is why we haven't hit the big felony arrests but we have some thins in the works." 

Mayor Mark Chambers asked House how many of the wrecks involved no insurance. House said about half did, for either one driver or another. Chambers said he hates accidents caused by someone with no insurance. 

Out of 511 tickets, 60 percent concerned tickets about insurance or tags, House said. Usually if the drivers don't have a tag when stopped, they don't have insurance. 

In other action Thursday, the council:

• Voted to approve a request from Officer John Jackson to step down to a part-time officer because his son plays ball in junior high, meaning they play Tuesdays and Thursdays. 

"Mr. Jackson didn't have any benefits with us. He was just basically working 40 hours a week," House said, relaying the request. "He requested to step down because he also drives a bus. He is starting to have some conflicts with schedules because he drives every Friday night that they are going away." 

Jackson has agreed to work Saturday and Sunday on 12-hour shifts until House can find a part-time officer who is certified to fill in, House said, noting the police schedule is still in good shape. 

Councilman Jason Chambers was absent at the meeting. 

• Heard Chambers say the new Rolling T Truck Stop was struck by lightning two nights earlier, setting an outside tank on fire, which the Carbon Hill Fire Department put out. "How would you like to be standing on top of 30,000 gallons of gasoline and put that fire out on top of it?" he said. Fire Chief Buddy Smith said the response time was three minutes. Chambers said that exit that the truck stop is on, on the Nauvoo Road, will create more calls for the fire department in time. 

• Heard Street Department Superintendent Alan May said the backhoe has been down but had been repaired that day. 

• Voted to buy a fan for street crews as there is no air conditioning in their building, which they endure when they have to make repairs inside. "We need a fan to stir the air," Chambers said. 

• Held an executive session on good name and character of an employee. 

• Agreed to take applications for the water board until Aug. 26, as Anita Wood term on it had expired. 

• Agreed to streamline monthly revenue transfers so that the Utility Board sends the city its revenue on garbage, instead of of the Utility Board sending all its revenue to the city and the city, in turn, sending the board's share back to them. An itemized statement would be created in the transfer. 

• Heard the mayor welcome the new District 6 councilman, Greg Anderson. 

• Discussed ways to get the outdoor stage built, although Hillfest, one of the intended beneficiaries of the outdoor structure, was only two weeks away. Chambers said he appreciated any donation of material or labor was welcome. District 1 McClain Burrough said some students from the school might could help, although a budget and a plan would be needed first.