Demings on Crime, Delinquency Challenges in Orange County
Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings attributes the recent spate of violent crimes, to some of the hazards which come from growing into a big city, even as data show that violent crime is trending downward.
Demings made this observation Thursday, in an exclusive interview with West Orlando News Online, pointing out that year-to-date, compared to last year, violent crime in Orange County is down by about 7 percent.
“Crime and delinquency are a few challenges that any major metropolitan city is going to experience,” he said. “We are seeing these things and are working proactively to deal with them and have been very successful in bringing to justice those we believe are the perpetrators of most of the homicides.”
Overall crime had declined by 23.2 percent in the first three years he had been in office, Demings said, and violent crime had declined by 20.2 percent.
Demings pointed to the several initiatives that have been undertaken under his leadership to help fight crime, including, opening new sub-stations in crime prone areas, enhanced patrols by deputies and new mentoring and gang-resistance programs.
While progress has been made in tackling crime over the nearly four years he has been in office, Demings said he is seeking re-election because more can be done in turning OCSO into a top-rated agency, nationwide.
“We can take this agency even further in terms of being one of the top most highly rated law enforcement agencies in the nation and we are doing that,” Demings said, noting that OCSO has been re-accredited at the national and state level. “Rome wasn’t built in a day and I am not disappointed in the progress that we have made.”
Demings will face a primary challenger in Mike Greene, a 20-year veteran of the New York Police Department, on August 14.