Crime in Jasper Co. continues during coronavirus pandemic

Crime in Jasper Co. continues during coronavirus pandemic

JASPER COUNTY, S.C. (WTOC) - The Jasper County Sheriff’s Office has been responding to the coronavirus along with every other organization in the county, but that doesn’t mean their other duties have stopped.

Right now the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office has a problem: how do they send officers out to respond to the coronavirus concerns while also making sure they have enough to respond to business as usual.

“Extra patrolling. Just being visible. That visibility is the calming factor that we can provide,“ said Det. Sgt. Jake Higgins.

They are taking coronavirus seriously.

“First of all, we had a registered nurse come in and just train our people. Just to say hey this is what to look for this is some pre-screening questions,“ said Sheriff Chris Malphrus.

Even adding two extra shifts for staff.

“We have added about 10 per shift. So we are at about 20 to 25 people per day."

They say it’s allowing them to work on public health concern calls as well as crime calls

“Well we changed up the hours just because we feel like there is a general panic. Then we have had several shootings so we are trying to make sure our neighbors are clothed in law-enforcement.“

A shooting two days ago reflected these measures.

“We already added numbers to our staff so it actually worked. If a crime was going to happen it happened at a better time because of our instant recall.“

The sheriff’s office says they weren’t surprised at the violence.

“Stresses are high and people are on edge and I think that is the cause of some of this.”

But they hope their presence will prevent it in the future. Now, they just have to focus on making sure they can stay consistent

“So we are trying to keep our officers in good spirits and good health and working them as much as we are working them, we are trying to stay in a safe limit. “

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