Columbia County Sheriff Clay Whittle recognized as Sheriff of the Year


AUGUSTA, GA ( WJBF) — Columbia County Sheriff Clay Whittle is now recognized by the Georgia Sheriff’s Association as Sheriff of the Year.

” I can’t get any of that accomplished without these 385 people that work for me, that put it all on the line everyday and give it 100 percent every day that they go out there. For that I am extremely grateful,” Sheriff Clay Whittle said.

Whittle has been in office since 1995 and while Columbia County continues to grow the crime rate has continued to drop.

2020 had the lowest number of reported crimes since he took office.

” We don’t look at it weekly. We don’t look at it monthly. We don’t look at it yearly. We look at the crime rate and the crime that’s taking place each and every day here,” Whittle said.

Whittle said there are a number of reasons for the low crime rate but a major factor is proactive policing — the department analyzes crime patterns and tries to prevent crimes from happening.

” We put things in place and they’re numerous to get at it. To go after that crime and to either prevent it or to detect it and apprehend it as soon as possible,” Whittle said.

Whittle said that in addition to community policing has made a big difference in the department.

“If you have those things and you have an effective law enforcement agency that keeps the crime rate low and keeps the community safe then you have a recipe for success,” Whittle said.

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