Neighborhood watch program, Waste Watch, to assist
law enforcement and emergency services.
December 18, 2013 – Local law enforcement and emergency officials now have some additional help in protecting the neighborhoods of Walton County, following the launch of Waste Management’s community safety program Waste Watch.
Through this program, Waste Management drivers will act as an extra set of eyes and ears for local police, fire department and emergency services, and report any suspicious activity that they may witness during their routes.
“We are pleased to partner with Waste Management on this crime prevention program,” said Sheriff Michael Adkinson, Walton County Sheriff’s Office. “This type of neighborhood watch initiative will enhance the safety of Walton County communities and provide law enforcement officers with an extra set of eyes on the street to protect our neighborhoods and our citizens.”
In Florida, tips from Waste Management employees trained through Waste Watch have alerted fire officials and saved a sleeping man from a burning industrial building, saved a family’s home from a fire, stopped a pit bull attack and led to the arrest of suspected vandals.
Through its Waste Watch program, Waste Management drivers have undergone proper training on what to look for and how to respond in the case of an emergency. Should anything occur while on their routes, drivers are instructed to pull over at the safest location and call emergency officials or their supervisor in a non-emergency situation.
Being members of the very communities they serve, Waste Management drivers are familiar with their routes and are good candidates to spot unusual activity, especially when they are trained on what to look for.
“As residents of Walton County, our drivers are proud to work in and protect our community,” said Amy Boyson, Community Affairs Manager for Waste Management. “This program has been launched in many cities throughout the United States and Florida, and we are proud to bring it to this area.”
Waste Management and its 44 employees in Walton County provide services to single-family residences as well as commercial customers.
For more information:
Community Affairs Manager
Cell: (904) 383-0094
The Walton County Sheriff’s Office is now using LeadsOnline, the nation’s largest online investigation system which aides law enforcement agencies to solve cases, recover stolen property, provide rapid electronic access to transactions from thousands of reporting businesses including scrap metal processors, secondhand stores, Internet drop-off stores, and pawn shops across the country, as well as critical information from eBay listings for criminal investigations. LeadsOnline can also help the community at large by keeping a secure, online record of valuable property. Citizens can visit https://www.reportit.leadsonline.com/ to store serial numbers, item descriptions, pictures and scanned receipts of personal property which can be easily identified in the event of theft or loss. The Sheriff’s Office also encourages businesses to register such as second hand dealers and can do so by visiting https://www.leadsonline.com/main/registration/businesses/businesses_register.php.
Patrol deputies with the Walton County Sheriff’s Office conducted a four day operation in the neighborhood of Oakwood Hills. Calls for service to the area has risen regarding thefts, home burglaries, car burglaries and narcotic violations. From Thursday, December 5th to Sunday, December 8th, deputies saturated the area to address the crime trends in the neighborhood and will continue to have a presence in the area. During the operation five individuals were arrested to include one juvenile. Katherine Turnipseed, 48, of 255 E Marigold, Defuniak Springs, FL, was arrested for allowing an unauthorized person to drive and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. April Turnipseed, 19, of 255 E Marigold, Defuniak Springs, FL, was arrested for domestic violence battery, Michael J. Smith, 29, of 16288 US Highway 90 West, Crestview, FL, was arrested for possession of a controlled substance without a prescription, Hulland T. McDonald, 34, of 50 E White Rose Street, Defuniak Springs, FL, was arrested for resisting an officer without violence. The fifth arrest was of a juvenile who was charged with driving without a license which is a misdemeanor (mug shot is not available).
The Sheriff’s Office will continue to have a proactive presence and will focus on known repeat offenders living in the area. Crime Stopper door hangers will be utilized to ask citizens for information and feedback. Citizens are asked to call the Sheriff’s Office for information regarding crime in their area at 850.892.8111 or anyone with any information who wants to be eligible for a cash reward of UP TO $1,000 is asked to call Emerald Coast Crime Stoppers at 863-TIPS (8477), report anonymously online at www.emeraldcoastcrimestoppers.com, text “TIP214 plus your tip” to 274637(CRIMES) or send a mobile tip using “Tipsubmit Mobile” which is a free download for iPhones, iPads, and Droids. (Text STOP to 274637 to cancel. Text HELP to 274637 for help. Msg&Data Rates May Apply.)
(L to R: K. Turnipseed, A. Turnipseed, Smith and McDonald)
Today, deputies and investigators with the Walton County Sheriff’s Office responded to a home on South Bay Grove Drive in Freeport around 3:30 pm after a 4 year old was shot in the chest with a Daisy Roger .177 caliber BB gun. The 4 year olds’ 14 year old cousin was standing 6 to 8 feet away when he pulled the trigger. The 4 year old was taken by ambulance to Bay Medical and went straight to surgery upon arrival. Due to the seriousness of the incident, a deputy sheriff assisted the paramedics in their treatment and stabilization of the victim. The 4 year old is listed in critical condition per Bay Medical.
“The paramedics were heroes in tending to the 4 year old and should be commended for their prompt and skillful actions,” stated Sgt Mark Wendel with the Walton County Sheriff’s Office.
A special thanks goes to Bay County Sheriff’s Office, Panama City Beach Police Department and Panama City Beach Police for controlling traffic in order to expedite the ambulance in getting to the hospital.