Inspecting the BSO’s Annual Report

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Between July 2012 and June 2013, Bossier Parish Sheriff’s Office (BPSO) deputies handled 20,729 calls for service, took 6,265 reports, and made 2,300 arrests.

During the same period, the BPSO Criminal Investigations Bureau was assigned 1,806 case; 1,275 were “closed by arrest or exception …”

And the BPSO Marine Patrol “spent 1,032 hours on the water … answered 54 calls for service … taught water safety to children at 11 events and provided security and safety at 32 bass tournaments …”

Last year, the Bossier Parish Sheriff’s Office motorcycle deputies made 2,730 traffic stops.

On average the dozen dispatchers in the BPSO Communications Division “… answer on average 350,000 calls per year.”

Those are just a few of the statistics enumerated in the BPSO 2012-2013 Annual Report – and if BPT readers haven’t had an opportunity to peruse this detailed report, they’re missing an outstanding opportunity to see governmental accountability at work.

While the statistics are impressive, Bossier Parish Sheriff Julian Whittington’s preface comments to the report demonstrate a commitment to making real his campaign promises. He notes, “As promised, I made some immediate changes once I took office in order the make the Sheriff’s Office more efficient.”Some of those changes include moving his office into the Bossier Parish Courthouse; reducing salaries to bring them in line with those of other agencies; delaying the purchase of new vehicles by extending the current fleet for another year; and reducing the cost of insurance through risk management.Whittington also cited a significant new endeavor involved forming the Joint Task Forces with the Bossier City Police Department for Narcotics and Financial Crimes – which helps avoid duplication of effort while allowing for more arrests. The annual report briefly highlights every division in the BPSO, and provides more interesting stats, such as how much money is saved by Bossier Parish government through the use of prisoners to pick up trash along “approximately 2,000 miles of parish roadways” — $400,000 in wages is saved.

The report also features the 2014 BPSO Consolidated Budget, providing readers a basic picture of the revenue stream and expenses. Whittington has also put his personal stamp on the Sheriff’s Office by introducing the “CPR approach” to policing: Courteous, Professional and Responsive – as detailed in the report’s BPSO Mission Statement.

Copies of the report are available at the BPSO in the Courthouse in Benton, the Viking Drive Substation, Benton Substation on Highway 3 (north of Benton), and the Teague Substation on the ART Parkway at the boat launch.

The 2014 BPSO Budget comes in at nearly $39 million – pick up a copy of the annual report and find out just what that pays for. You’ll find that the BPSO is about a whole lot more than writing tickets and courtroom security.

 

Marty Carlson is a columnist for the Bossier Press-Tribune. She may be reached via email at m_carlso@bellsouth.net