Sheriff’s Office hosts annual camp

Steena Hymes

July 9, 2014

Troup County Sheriff’s Office has its first week of their annual Sheriff’s Academy for Youth underway designed to give kids a first-hand look at the ins and outs of the TCSO.

Stewart Smith, public information officer, said the purpose of SAY Camp is to reach out to the youth of the community, building relationships.

Tuesday, 24 campers were able to see a hands-on demonstration where Jack - a K9 - sniffed out a pound of explosive hidden in a vehicle.

Campers were thrilled as K9 Deputy Stephen Arndt taught campers all about Jack and even let the kids pet him.

Patrol Deputy Matt Searles explained to kids his daily routine in addition to presenting them with all of his equipment including handcuffs, a baton and Taser. New recruit Adam Richardson shared with campers the training process on how to become a deputy.

Investigator Chase Darden treated kids to an inside tour of the Mobile Command Crime Scene Unit and showing them how investigators dust for fingerprints and obtain evidence.

Narcotics Investigator Jason Newsome warned children on the dangers of drugs showing them several pictures of the consequence of drug use. Small amounts of seized drugs such as methamphetamine, marijuana and cocaine were passed around for kids to be aware of what to look out for.

As the problem of prescription drug abuse continues to arise, Newsome explained to kids how to use prescription drugs and safety cautions.

In addition to their time learning about the daily operations of the TCSO, campers have enjoyed many field trips such as a trip to Water Wiz and the skating rink.

Smith said the campers have all had great responses to the activities, adding that the K9 demonstrations and hands-on activities tend to be the popular favorite among kids.

A partnership between the TCSO and Parks and Recreation, the camp is a $40 cost and open to the first 25 kids that sign up. This week is open to 9-10 year olds and next week will open up to 11-12 year olds. The day camp lasts Monday through Friday.