Residents Concerned About Dwindling Ingham County Patrols

By: Sherene Tagharobi Email
By: Sherene Tagharobi Email

If you haven't seen Ingham County Sheriff's deputies patrolling recently -- here's why.

"We are cut to the bare bones," said Lt. Vern Elliott.

The Board of Commisioners cut police this year. Townships that rely on those services--like Leslie Township--responded by asking voters to consider a millage: $150/year to help fund police. But in all but one township voters rejected it, saying they pay enough to the county in taxes. That leaves the entire out-county with a max of three officers on the roads.

"That's kind of odd an area the size of Ingham County would only have three patrols," said Ingham County resident Randy Reed.

And without that millage, it could be even fewer come January when the new budget takes effect. Reed works security at a local bar.

"I believe we need more protection in this area," he said.

And his girlfriend works at the Dollar Store, where he says things can get ugly.

"Well, there's a lot of vandalism in the area, teenage problems, get a lot of theft in the stores," he said.

Leslie Township Supervisor Dallas Henny says when all is well and good, people may not notice the lack of patrols. Not until something goes wrong--he says--will people start to ask why there are no police patrolling their neighborhoods.

"We can't respond in a timely manner to any traffic accidents we get in the evening or any other calls of service," said Elliott.

Just Wednesday night, Deputy Scott Macomber responded when someone's window got shot with a pellet gun. He says the caller was obviously upset it took him 40 minutes to get there.

"Just in general unhappy it takes that long and that we have nobody out patrolling their neighborhoods anymore," he said.

Henny says it's a numbers game. If you don't have enough bodies, he says, you won't get a response in an emergency. And he worries without patrols on the road, those streets will start to beckon criminals.

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  • by otto Location: 49264 on Nov 26, 2010 at 12:39 PM
    Where's the state Police,Having coffee?
  • by anon Location: hole on Nov 26, 2010 at 11:38 AM
    To anonymous. Gotta set this straight. Fact. In 2002 there were 16 road patrol deputies on the night shift. There is now 4. They used to put 5 to 7 cars out a night. Now it is 1 to 2.
  • by RT Location: Lansing on Nov 26, 2010 at 11:04 AM
    WOW!!...LOTS of good points by folks about this subject. I, personally, am glad ALL the milleages got voted out--we already pay too much. How about cutting the admin jobs versus the folks in the trenches and use some budgeting discipline? I have to ultimately agree with Tim from Dansville...potential criminals better beware because they'll find themselves looking down the business end of a defensive firearm!!
  • by david Location: charlotte on Nov 26, 2010 at 10:43 AM
    good luck all you in ingham county pass a mill for pets at a zoo and then get the rug pulled out from under ya makes you wonder where the prioritys are i hope ya all own a gun and to tim amen
  • by mike Location: lansing on Nov 26, 2010 at 06:52 AM
    How much does the average home owner pay a year in Ingham co.Then add another 150 add that to what you are all ready paying,when does it stop.I live in lansing i vote no everytime.What if your working,ok ball park figure $2000, making60,000 now retired still have to pay $2000 makes a big difference. I say after i turn 65 no more school taxes cause now i am making $20,000 should be baised on income.
  • by Tim Location: Dansville on Nov 26, 2010 at 05:23 AM
    Many of you state "stupid" "morons', but did you vote? Did it conserne you" I voted NO to the millage increase AND the zoo millage. Why pay more for something we already pay for. The downsizeing is nothing more than mis-manageing money. As for the criminals visiting the out county? They need to know that most of us are gun owners, who know how to use a firearm. Our houses are protected by the good lord and a gun, come here not welcome and you just might meet them both son.
  • by Anonymous Location: Mason on Nov 26, 2010 at 05:17 AM
    The road patrols haven't been cut!!!!! Most people don't know it but there has only been one officer on road patrol at a time since 2000. Maybe two on New Years eve. The other deputies are at the jail or the hospital watching the drunks. This was just a scare tactic to get more money out of the tax payers.
  • by Anonymous Location: Mason on Nov 25, 2010 at 09:04 PM
    They gave people the option to vote for police, how any parent can sit at home and have voted no to paying $150 for a year to bring safety to their neighborhood and families is beyond me. Now they will be lucky to have two officers for the entire county come January. Hope they aren't tied up when your house gets broke into... you'll end up waiting hours!
  • by Jim Location: out county on Nov 25, 2010 at 06:23 PM
    Its very important the media report on the lack of law enforcement in the areas mentioned. This will make every crimminal in the state want to give us a visit. Anything for a story without any thinking of the impact it can have.. Nice responcible community safety reporting.
  • by Anonymous on Nov 25, 2010 at 06:19 PM
    Who would have thought, you people vote the millage down, and you wonder where the patrols went. You people voted yes for the zoo, but no for the police. Makes a lot of sense. Hope the rhino can stop crime like a deputy might be able to.
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