Date: August 10, 2010
Time: 9:00 AM
Sheriff Smith announces the purchase of 6 vehicles as part of the Sheriff's Office Fleet replacement plan. The vehicles being replaced range in mileage from 100,000 to 150,000 miles. Sheriff Smith says, "The replacement of these vehicles is vital for our deputies' safety, which is paramount to me. One of these cars is down with a failed transmission."
The K-9 replacements will be Chevrolet Tahoe's that will be purchased through a State contract price. The K-9 vehicles are four- wheeled drive and they will be equipped with an alarm system that will warn the deputy if the vehicle overheats, which could be fatal to the K-9 dogs. These vehicles will also have automatic door openers, which give the officer the added safety ability to release the K-9 with a remote. The current K-9 vehicles do not allow for the transport of prisoners. The new K-9 vehicles will have that ability. This will eliminate the need for another officer to respond and transport.
The other two vehicles being replaced will go to the Criminal Investigation Division. In April 2010 Investigator Tom Martin was responding to a burglary in progress in Fanning Springs, when someone pulled out in front of him causing him to crash and totaled his car that had only 29,000 miles. The driver of the other car was cited for the crash and also found guilty in traffic court. The Sheriff's Office has not received any money from the driver's insurance company, and is currently in arbitration. Martin's replacement vehicle is being purchased at a cost to the taxpayers of only $700. The majority of funding for this replacement is from seized and auction vehicles that were sold at a public auction.
The second replacement is in the Criminal Investigation Division. This vehicle was a four wheel drive that had over 150,000 miles. It is being replaced with a four wheel drive truck.
Sheriff Smith say's "that in strategically planning for future needs of our fleet, consideration was given to the geographical lay out of our county in addition to the threats facing us as a coastal county and it only makes sense to move toward vehicle replacement with four wheel drive capabilities.
Major Evan Sullivan
Levy County Sheriff's Office
FBI-National Academy 183rd Session