Sheriff Roundtree talks gangs, pay raises in first Facebook Live with media

First Facebook Live raises concerns about crime with Sheriff.

Besides the cars driving back and forth on Tobacco Road, the Spanish Trace neighborhood remains quiet during the day. 

“In the Spanish Trace area there has been only 17 incidents in three months,” said Richmond County Sheriff Richard Roundtree.

The sheriff said considering the size of Richmond County, that number is not not unusual.
 One of those incidents was a shooting on Wakefield Court back in June.  When it comes to gangs, his intelligence unit looks for patterns, he explained.  And patterns can help bring indictments like the one against the gang Loyalty Over Everything.

“We did almost a 13, 14 month investigation.  We were able to indict about 17 different individuals on 56 counts under the RICO Act,” he said. “So, we’re not trying to cripple the gang, we’re trying to annihilate it by trying to dismantle it from the leadership down.”

NewsChannel 6 kicked off the sheriff’s half hour one-on-one interviews with media on Facebook Live.

The public had a chance to weigh in with questions too and those questions came rolling in fast, mostly about crime in South Augusta. 

Do you have a substation here and that question is probably coming because of the crime that’s here?

He replied, “People don’t understand that a substation does not reduce crime, it is the deputies being within those particular areas.  We went to a zone concept.  One day they might meet at the Circle K, one day they might meet at the bank and one day they might meet at a community park.”

Go to bat for your officers. Go to the commission and get money for problem oriented policing unit.  

“$33,000 to $39,000 in six years for starting pay raises in Richmond County.   Is that what the deputies deserve?  No, I wish I could pay them ten times that.  We’re going to keep fighting for that.  We are competitive,” the sheriff said. 

There’s something the public can do to help too.  And if you feel like a snitch, that’s ok.  

“Your job is to give us the information no matter what it is, then let us sift through it,” said Roundtree adding that this concept worked during his days in homicide.  “Don’t think that anything is trivial, like well I wasn’t going to say anything but I didn’t think that was important.  Sometimes that is the most important information that we can possibly get, the thing that you thought wasn’t important.”

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