Bibb sheriff candidates share visions for department

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Three men want to be the next Bibb County sheriff.

All three candidates have a background in law enforcement and have worked in the Bibb County Sheriff’s Office, but how they plan to improve the department is where they start to differ.

Tim Rivers wants to create more task forces, Mike Smallwood wants to bring back retirees and Sheriff David Davis wants to keep focusing on outreach.

Davis, Smallwood and Rivers all have a passion for law enforcement.

“To be there to help people is the bottom line to want to be in this job,” said Davis.

They also all want to be the next sheriff.

Rivers started at the Macon Police Department in 2010. He worked on patrol, investigations and eventually became a K-9 handler.

“I want to reduce crime in our neighborhoods, make it safer. Also, boost morale in the workplace so our deputies can have a fair advantage and I also want to develop a strong community partnership,” explained Rivers.

Fixing the retirement-pension plan and creating more task forces are also top priorities for Rivers.

“TBC simply stands for taking back control of your community. The deputies got to get out of the vehicles. We can’t afford to ride around in vehicles. I want to make sure that Macon-Bibb County is [fully] staffed again with deputies. We need to put more officers back out there on the street,” said Rivers.

Smallwood, a former Bibb investigator, agrees with that idea.

“Less jobs in the office. If there’s a job in the office, we can hire a civilian. If you a certified, gun-toting officer, you need to be out in the street,” said Smallwood.

The law enforcement veteran wants to bring back specialized units.

“We’re running a third of the units now than we [were] running under the Macon Police Department and the Bibb County Sheriff’s department when we [were] separate,” explained Smallwood.

He also talked about bringing back other retirees.

“They would be deputies. They would not have rank. They would answer calls. We have enough rank,” said Smallwood.

Incumbent Sheriff Davis prides himself on his outreach programs.

“We have been in this community. We have walked the streets in all parts of this community. Our PRIDE initiative [makes] people think about some of the things that they can do to make things better,” explained Davis.

Davis believes reaching out to people at a young age helps prevent crime.

“My view is you have to attack crime on both sides. You have to go and impact young people and hopefully divert them from getting into gangs, doing criminal activity, but then on the other end, if people do become involved in criminal activity, that we do all we can to identify them and bring them to justice,” said Davis.

If re-elected, Davis plans to continue these programs.

If you want to vote for the Bibb County Sheriff position, you must request a democratic ballot. The last day for early voting is May 20. Election Day is Tuesday, May 24.


Categories: Bibb County, Elections, Local News

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