Clay County Sheriff’s Office is on it’s way to accreditation

CLAY & OKTIBBEHA COUNTIES, Miss (WCBI)- It’s an achievement very few Mississippi sheriff’s departments can claim.

But a second Golden Triangle department will soon receive its accreditation.

To become accredited you have to meet a professional standard. There are many rules and regulations, and for many departments, it means a culture shift.

But Clay County Sheriff Eddie Scott said the hard work has paid off.

The Clay County Sheriff’s Department has a reason to celebrate.

They are now one of only five accredited sheriff’s departments in the state.

The road to receiving this honor has been a long one, but for Sheriff Eddie Scott it has been worth it.

“It’s been an extraordinary journey getting to this point I’m working on it for over two years is a major milestone for our department. It’s a set of policies has been tried and true that officers we must abide by. We are always trying to bring our departments to a higher level that’s where we work at but not just our departments, but I’m sure as well we want to be able to provide the best for our community,” said Sheriff Eddie Scott.

While this distinction is something to be proud of, it’s only the beginning.

Clay County must maintain all 140 professional standards to keep the accreditation.

“This is going to be an everyday deal. This is not just a one time shot. We’re going to have to work every day maintaining this accreditation and look for ways to improve. Just because we’re accredited doesn’t mean that there’s not other things we can do to improve. So we’re going to continue doing that and working with our other agencies on protecting our community,” said Sheriff Scott.

Back in 2012, the Oktibbeha County Sheriff’s Department became the fourth in the state to be accredited.

Seven years later they are still reaping the benefits.

“When we present things the grand jury, or we go to trial with the policies and procedures that we do when we lay out our case files and all that is in there. We say that we do it and we can prove that we do it that way. So, I think that now the deputies, they take pride in it too. I’d like to see everybody in the state become accredited I think it would just make everybody better,” said Sheriff Steve Gladney.

On February 20, everything will become official after going in front of the Sheriff’s board.

Sheriff Scott said it’s nice to see his deputies’ hard work pay off.

“I’m very excited and very happy at the point we’re in, and I think it makes it better for our community and for law enforcement overall when these officers are trained like this,” said Sheriff Scott.

The Lowndes County Sheriff’s Department is also working to become accredited.

Once they are approved the entire Golden Triangle will be held to this standard.

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