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Someone made mention the other day “Just wait until they start digging into his past in law enforcement. “ So instead of the normal Monday musing where I provide my stand on issues or how I intend to change and move the department forward, I will go over my career in law enforcement.

 

The first time I put on a police officer uniform was as a reserve officer for the city of Cahokia, IL. It was a non-paid position as most reserve positions are. I did this from 1975 to 1979. It was my first exposure to law enforcement and found I thoroughly enjoyed it. Left that department as a Sergeant.

 

My next time in uniform was with the Department of Public Safety, Agana, Guam. I began that stint in 1981 after graduating from an 8 month police academy. I was certified to patrol by myself and averaged 20 to 30 hours a week. I worked the majority of my time as a Traffic Officer investigating DUI’s and traffic crashes. I also spent a short time with the horse mounted unit! While in the traffic unit, I participated in an investigation looking for several suspects wanted in a number of homicides which included the death of one officer. I was part of the team that located them and during the standoff, one officer was shot multiple times. My efforts to save the Officer resulted in me being awarded the Silver Star for bravery. I was promoted to Lieutenant and was in charge of training for reserve officers. I left that position in 1983. And once again it was non-pay!

 

Then, in 1991 I went to the Reserve Officer academy in Jacksonville Florida. I continued the reserve status through January 1993. While a Reserve Officer, I was awarded a commendation from the Fire Department for my efforts in saving a man from a burning car. Again, this was a non-pay status.

 

I attended the Basic Law Enforcement Training Academy in Jacksonville, starting in August 1992 and graduating in January 1993. I was hired by the City of Jacksonville Beach as a paid reserve officer for about 90 days, enough to complete my field training. I was then hired to work full time. I worked for Jax Bach PD until September 1995. As an officer with that department, I voluntarily took on an investigation that resulted in the arrest of a serial killer by the name of Gary Ray Bowles. I ended up with an awful lot of attention from people across the country as well as a segment on “America’s Most Wanted” and a commendation.

 

I was hired by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office in September 1995 and stayed there until I retired in June 2014. As an Officer there, I worked in Patrol, the Community Policing Unit (COPS), Burglary, Gang Unit, Economic Crimes and the Aggravated Battery unit within the Homicide division. However, the majority of my career was with the Narcotics Unit. I was first assigned there in 1998 and left in 2012. While in Narcotics, I worked everything from buying drugs from low level drug dealers to purchasing kilograms to extremely complicated investigations involving wire taps as well as federal prosecutions. I also worked as a DEA Task Force Officer for about a year. I had much success in making entry and arrests in areas and organizations where others had failed. While at the Sheriff’s Office, I was awarded Officer of the Month three times and Officer of the Year once. Each time, I was selected out of a department of approximately 1700 officers. Oh, and I am frequently seen on the television show “COPS” in reruns!
In February of 2019, I was hired to work at the Public Safety Training Center at the Southwestern Community College. I was tasked with coordinating in-service training as well as advanced training for area departments. Additionally I obtained my North Carolina Law Enforcement General Instructor certification and currently teach recruits. I resigned all but my instructor duties to pursue my goal of being your next Sheriff!

 

Sorry for the length, but I wanted to give you a snapshot of the highlights of my career. I am extremely well qualified to be the next Sheriff of Macon County and look forward to discussing my vision to move it forward.

Paid for by the Bob Cook for Sheriff Committee
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