Meeks in contest for sheriff’s seat

Published 12:00 am Thursday, March 25, 2010

Dennis Meeks announced this week that he will seek a second term as sheriff.

Meeks said it has been an honor to serve the citizens of Covington County the past three years.

“It has been a challenge at times but also rewarding,” he said. “We’ve made a lot of changes that I feel has bettered the sheriff’s office.”

He said among those were putting more patrols on the road by rearranging shift schedules, increasing the number of investigators to four and increasing the number of security officers at the courthouse to three.

“All of these changes have been accomplished without additional cost to the county,” Meeks said. “Through revenues from grants and other means, the sheriff’s office within the last three years has secured more than $325,000.00 for training, equipment, overtime and updating law enforcement technology.”

In March 2007 the work release dorm was opened, adding an additional 48 beds to the capacity of the jail. This addition helped the overcrowding that was being experienced on a daily basis, Meeks said.

“Through the hard work of the administration and staff at the jail, the number of inmates has been reduced from more than 200 on a regular basis to below the 180 capacity of the Covington County jail,” he said. “Measures have also been taken to update and increase jail security. I am proud to announce that after many months of hard work, the juvenile section at the Covington County Jail has been reopened, saving the county an estimated $12,000 annually in the transport of juveniles.”

Meeks is a Democrat, and the only announced candidate for sheriff thus far.