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Are You Tuned In?

As your Sheriff, it has always been a top priority of mine to communicate with you, the citizens I serve. It is not only important for me to know the inner workings of the agency, but for you to know what the officers, firefighters, emergency management personnel and other employees are doing to keep our community safe.

This publication, Behind the Badge, is one such tool that we use to fill you in on the happenings around the Sheriff’s Office. We partner with the Chronicle, our only daily, hometown newspaper, to deliver this newsletter to your doorstep. We utilize social media sites, like Facebook and Twitter (@sheriffcitrus) to reach a certain audience, and we work with regional news stations to get the word out on important breaking news stories.

Sheriff Jeff Dawsy
Sheriff Jeffrey J. Dawsy

I’ve always been a fan of radio, and recently we turned our attention to our local affiliate Citrus 95.3 and sister station The Fox 96.7. Through a cooperative effort, and the willingness of station management to work with us, we started a weekly radio show called “Ask the Sheriff.” It has been hugely successful and I want to invite you to tune in and join in on the fun.

Every Wednesday from 7:00 to 8:00 AM we’re on The Fox 96.7 to discuss relevant topics and answer listener questions. Every Thursday from 4:00 to 5:00 PM we’re on Citrus 95 to do the same. We use a simple format and answer questions as we go along.

Usually, the first thing we talk about is current events, like major crimes, arrests, recent fires or accomplishments. This is our “In the News” segment. Next is our “In the Community” segment, where we mention where we’ll be around the county doing blood pressure checks, participating in community events and more.

“Hometown Heroes” is one of my favorites because I get to brag about something wonderful someone in the agency has done over the past week. We feature someone who has gone above and beyond their normal job duties to provide exceptional service to someone who needed help. These incidents usually come from feedback from you. We appreciate the emails, phone calls and Facebook messages thanking individuals in the agency for a job well done. Yet another good reason to tune into the show because you may actually be a part of it.

The listener favorite is currently the “You Can’t Make This Stuff Up” section of the show. This is really a lot of fun. We tell factual events that have happened in our county that people actually have a hard time believing. A few weeks ago, we profiled two criminals who stopped to charge their GPS monitors before robbing someone they were hanging out with. Of course, that made it very easy to arrest them. We shared another recent incident where a sexual predator was caught on camera running through the neighborhood and stealing newspapers – and did I mention he was naked? You really can’t make this stuff up…

We always save the best for last with “The Wanted of the Week.” Here, we profile a wanted criminal with an outstanding warrant who has eluded arrest. This feature has been extremely effective, with a 90% arrest rate after profiling the suspect on the radio and then posting his/her photo on our Facebook and Twitter sites.

We’d love to hear from you during one of our “Ask the Sheriff” radio shows, so make a note to tune in and give us a call on Wednesdays at 7:00 AM at 746-9696 and on Thursdays at 4:00 PM at 746-0953. I can guarantee you’ll hear something you’ve never heard before…