CAMPAIGN BUZZ

I am Walter Munzi Calloway your candidate for the Sheriff of Fulton County. 

I have over 25 years of sworn and civilian law enforcement with serving the Atlanta Police Department, Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice and the Fulton County Sheriff Office. The past 14 years I have been committed to ensuring a safe and secure learning environment for our children in Atlanta Public Schools.

“Let’s change the Streets” is based upon my belief in community first. The basic work of law enforcement has not change sense it’s date of origin. A professional relationship with the community allows for the best practices of law enforcement.

My vision for the Sheriff office is “A county that creates an opportunity for better quality of life through the collaboration of the community, government and law enforcement”.

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Mon, Jul 15, 2019

FULTON SHERIFF SEEKS FOURTH TERM, CHALLENGERS ANNOUNCED

 

WEST ATLANTA, GA-Fulton County Sheriff Ted Jackson is seeking a fourth term in 2020. Jackson’s start with the agency started in 2004 when he became ‘interim’ sheriff to restore order when embattled Sheriff Jackie Barrett stepped aside. 

Jackson came during a time of jail overcrowding, rising crime, staffing shortages, and a federal consent decree. In 2015, the federal court lifted the consent decree, and over the years, the Sheriff’s Office also took over operations of the Alpharetta and South Fulton Regional Jails. 

The South Fulton Regional Jail is currently under federal investigation over jail conditions and with the City of Atlanta becoming the latest city to get out of the jail business, some city stakeholders question if Fulton County can handle the capacity issues. 

“The department has a long list of accomplishments over the last ten years,” Jackson said. “I am especially proud that we were able to get the Federal Consent Decree removed, completed the County Courthouse Command Center and invested heavily in our youth, all while leading with integrity. We face new challenges and our team looks forward to meeting every one of them.”

Historically, Fulton Sheriffs focused on the Fulton County Jail, securing the Fulton County Courthouse, and serving warrants. However, sheriffs are constitutional officers and are designated the chief law enforcement officer of the county. A sheriff often services unincorporated areas where there is not a county police department present or takes on more advanced policing duties from smaller city agencies. The sheriff also can develop law enforcement and crime prevention strategies anywhere they see fit within a county and legally cannot be asked to step aside by other agencies. Some sheriffs coordinate activities with other police chiefs to tackle significant crime issues, and others tend to work secondary to police departments. 

Previously, the Clayton County Sheriff's Office operated similar to the Fulton County Sheriff's Office until Sheriff Victor Hill took over in 2005 where he placed deputies in neighborhoods, declared war on crime especially in troubled areas like Riverdale Road, Old Dixie Highway and Tara Boulevard. In his first term, he lobbied abolishing the Clayton County Police Department under the issue of duplication of services. 

"We are constitutionally obligated to have the Clayton County Sheriff's Office, but we are not under any mandate, court order or requirement to operate a Clayton County Police Department," he said in a 2006 interview. "We are double taxing citizens, and we need to have one focus on crime-fighting countywide not competing interests as we have now. Criminals milk this to their advantage." 

After he was defeated in 2008, he was elected in 2012 and had a much better working relationship with the Clayton County Police and brags about the current chief. Hill focuses now on special operations and still keeps deputies in the streets and collaborates with county agencies on removing criminals from Clayton County. 

"To all criminals, Clayton County will no longer be a safe space for you to hide, do business in and on December 31, 2012, you need to be gone, or I will come for you," he said after winning the 2012 primary. "The crime fighter is back!" 

Jackson told Home Rule News previously that he viewed his work in support, not as a takeover or attempted to micromanage agencies. 

"We provide police chiefs in Fulton whatever resources and services that we can do to assist them. Many candidates think we're a first responding agency, but we focus on supporting our police departments," he said in 2016. "I meet with police chiefs monthly to hear their concerns and look at how we can work together, especially in areas where we have jagged borders, high crime, and other issues. These meetings, we shared intelligence and netted some get cases that were plaguing multiple jurisdictions at once." 

Other challengers announcing include familiar names such as Atlanta City Jailer Patrick Labat and Academic Intervention Specialist for Atlanta Public Schools, Walter Calloway. 

Jackson campaign is endorsed by elected officials, community leaders, and members of the faith community. The 2020 re-election campaign is headlined by Atlanta Braves great Henry “Hank” Aaron and former Atlanta Mayor and US Ambassador Andrew Young and is co-chaired by business leader Mack Wilbourn, Ken Sanders, and Reverend Timothy McDonald, Pastor of First Iconium Baptist Church and former President of the Concerned Black Clergy.

“We are fortunate to have a leader in whom we can trust. He has integrity, experience, and the vision to move the Sheriff’s Office ahead,” McDonald said. “I am proud, very proud, to stand with and support Sheriff Jackson.”

As Chief of the City of Atlanta Department of Corrections, Labat serves on the Mayor’s executive team as well as other administrative policy-making bodies and is responsible for providing the visionary leadership for a $30 million budget while achieving high levels of success and promoting effectiveness and efficiency across all departments within the City of Atlanta. His hands-on ability to build rapport, boost morale, and work proactively with employees, internal departments, department heads, and the general public has resulted in numerous successful partnerships.

Calloway served with the Atlanta Police Department for 11 years. During his tenure with APD, his assignments were as a patrolman in Zone 1 and 6. In 1993, the Atlanta Police Department and Atlanta Public Schools initiated the School Resource Officer program to ensure a safe and secure environment for productive educational instruction. Calloway was one of the first School Resource Officers in the department. Furthermore, he garnered a tremendous amount of experience and training during his service with the Atlanta Police Department, where he served under the command of three administrations. During his service with the Atlanta Police Department, Calloway witnessed some citizens endure social and professional injustice. As a result, he decided to share his skills and expertise in other fields of service to the community. He gained correctional experience with the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice and later accepted a position as a Security Specialist at the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office.

For the past ten years, Calloway has worked with the Atlanta Public Schools System and presently serves as an Academic Intervention Specialist.

It is anticipated others may announce in upcoming months for the May 2020 primary. Historically, Fulton County always elected democrat sheriffs but Republicans often attempt a shot at the office despite an assumption that the sheriff is decided in the Democrat primary runoff. 

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