A different take on the crime problem in the county

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Yesterday morning the District Attorney presented the Board of Supervisors with an interesting perspective on the number of criminal cases from Pearl River County.

We have a drug problem just like the rest of the country, he said, but rather than it truly getting out of hand, local law enforcement is doing the job of drug enforcement quite effectively.

With 43 percent of the DA’s caseload involving residents of this county, at first it might seem like we’re the problem child of District 15. And in some ways we are; we require a lot funding for courts, law enforcement, jails and delinquency programs, according to the annual budget reports.

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But on the other end of the spectrum, even though our departments seem severely short staffed at times, they are making arrests frequently and investigating crimes that affect us all whether directly or indirectly.

While 50 percent of the crimes in this county over the last eight years are related to drugs, other crime like theft and violent crimes can be linked to the abuse or dependency of drugs.

While we are thankful that we don’t see the same violent crime rates as people living in larger cities, it could get worse if drugs become more prevalent. The county needs to keep funding law enforcement agencies to maintain an equilibrium, but they can only do so much. In the end, it’s going to be up to state and federal programs to help curb the drug problem as a whole.

No matter how much we try, it’s almost impossible to make Pearl River County a drug/crime free bubble.