WILLIAMSON – Mingo County sheriff’s deputies now have every day access to all the equipment they need to perform the duties of their job, thanks to a new equipment room.
Sheriff James Smith and Chief Field Deputy Joe Smith worked with Mingo County Grant Writer Leigh Ann Ray to procure grants to help them stock their supply room with several necessary items.
“We have a fully stocked supply room to make sure the deputies have all the tools they need to serve the people of Mingo County,” Sheriff Smith said. “We were able to obtain these supplies through the equipment grants that we received.”
Not only is the room stocked, but it is organized so that the Mingo County Sheriff’s Department (MCSD) can keep an ongoing inventory for the materials they need.
The room, which is located in the basement section of the courthouse, has things like gun residue kits, needle syringe keepers, evidence collecting bags, drug testing kits, crime scene tape, paint for marking traffic accident scenes, uniforms and much more.
“With the inventory list we can keep up with what we have in stock and what we need to reorder,” Sheriff Smith said. “That way we can buy more when we need it and our deputies will always have access to the equipment they need.”
“This is much more organized than in the past,” Smith added.
The deputies now have “turtle-skin gloves,” which are supposed to be puncture and needle proof, so when officers are searching someone, they have protection against used syringes. This can help safeguard the officers from getting needle sticks and help them from contacting HIV and Hepatitis infections.
Heroin and other drugs are at epidemic levels in the region and officers are in contact with many persons who are intravenous drug users.
“Each deputy now has a pair of those gloves,” Smith stressed.
“They pretty much have whatever they need so the department can be self-reliant,” Smith concluded.
(Kyle Lovern is the Editor for the Williamson Daily News. He can be contacted at [email protected] or at 304-235-4242, ext. 2277 or on Twitter @KyleLovern.)