Sheriff Says Radar Could Help Him Put A Stop To Speeding

Countless tires burn the Highway 63 pavement every day in Jackson County. Their speed goes unregulated because, according to Sheriff Mike Byrd, deputies don't have access to a certain tool.

"A radar gun. When people get out in the county, they know the sheriff's department doesn't    have radar. So they'll automatically let their speed get much higher," Jackson County Sheriff Mike Byrd says.

And that's cause for concern for many residents, like Barbara Martin. She's tired of cars and trucks flying by her work and home at excessive speeds.

"I would say they speed an average of 70, 80, 90 miles an hour," Barbara Martin says. "These drivers don't care. They're going fast and don't even realize it."

For decades, bills allowing counties to use radar have consistently been defeated. So Martin is pushing state legislators for a solution.

"We are preparing resolutions, as we have for the last several years, for each of the civic organizations of Jackson County," Martin says.

She hopes to garner enough support on both the local and state levels, to help sheriff's deputies put a stop to people's need for speed.

"We've got to do something. Radar is a scientific tool that's needed in detecting speed. We have DNA for rape and murder cases, we have fingerprints. This is scientific stuff. That's what a radar gun is. Let us have the scientific tool we need to save people's lives," Sheriff Byrd says.

Lowndes County is the only county in Mississippi that has permission to use radar. That came in the 1970s after local officials passed a law similar to what Martin is trying to get approved for Jackson County.