Diamondhead wants to beef up its police department

Diamondhead wants to beef up its police department
(Photo source: WLOX)

DIAMONDHEAD, MS (WLOX) - Captain John Luther with the Diamondhead Police Department hopes to strengthen ties between his force and the community it protects and serves. City leaders are asking Diamondhead residents to take part in a U.S. Justice Department Community Perception Survey. The hope is the results can help the city secure an additional police officer.

The city of Diamondhead boasts one of the lowest crime rates on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, and the people who live there are well aware of the fact..

"I don't think Diamondhead has a very large crime problem. Some of the things that we have are more juvenile related crimes, maybe some auto burglaries and stuff like that. But as far as when you look at bigger cities, we really don't have that kind of problem here," said Diamondhead resident Scott Fenner.

Resident David Taylor said, "Maybe leaving garages open at night, theft in that manner. But other than that, I think crime stays pretty low here."

Robert Bradley said, "I'm very happy with the way the police are taking care of the community. I don't know of anything I'd complain about at all."

City leaders want to hear how crime and the police department is perceived by the community. They are asking them to take a brief survey. Diamondhead contracts the Hancock County Sheriff's Department to provide law enforcement for the city.

"We have eight full-time deputies, plus a supervisor, and an investigator assigned to Diamondhead through an inter-local agreement." explained City Manager Clovis Reed.

Reed said the department could use an additional police officers to maintain the city's low crime rate. A COPS grant from the Justice Department would pay 75-percent of the officer's salary for three years.

"It will afford us the opportunity to increase patrols within the city, it will give us higher visibility and greater interaction with the community," said Captain John Luther with the Diamondhead Police Department.

City leaders say residents can pick up a copy of the survey at City Hall during normal business hours or fill out the survey online: http://www.diamondhead.ms.gov/Documents/Police%20Department/2015%20community%20policing%20community%20survey.pdf

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