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Sheriff McNeil Launches Community Initiative

Sarah Mueller

Leon County Sheriff Walt McNeil said his office is partnering with community members to reduce crime. He says his office will also focus on quality of life issues.

McNeil said he wants every Leon County citizen to be “all in.” That means joining with the city of Tallahassee, schools, universities and social service agencies to cut down on crime.

Part of the initiative includes efforts to increase neighborhood watch groups. McNeil said there’s also a task force aimed at reducing auto thefts and vehicle burglaries.

“All of our deputies, all of our corrections officers, all of our staff are committed to doing everything we can to make Tallahassee/Leon County safe. We need every citizen engaged,” he said.

McNeil's office is focusing on outreach in the neighborhoods around Bond Elementary and the Griffin Heights and South City communities. The sheriff’s office is also collaborating with Refuge House, which helps domestic violence victims, and Kearney Center - an emergency homeless shelter.

Tallahassee City Commissioner Scott Maddox praised the “all-in” initiative.

“As a Tallahassian, I’ve waited a long time for this day where there is no jurisdiction lines, where we all have one goal, where we all are part in an effort to ensure that we have a safe community,” he said.

McNeil said he’s hoping a summer youth program that starts next month and a youth mentoring program help reduce juvenile crime.