Sheriff’s Department update for Pine Island
February 1, 2011
First of all, we have a home. The LCSO Gulf District Sub-station will be opening within several weeks at the Pineland Marina. As you might recall, we were there previously, but moved at the request of the previous owner. The Pineland Marina in now under new management and we have been invited back. The Gulf District Patrol Deputies (Pine Island and Matlacha Supervisors and Deputies), Detective Troutt, Clerk Cassy Skau, Lt. Jim Brown, and I, will have offices at the sub-station. The office will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for the public. We hope to have a grand re-opening soon.
The Sheriff’s Office Annual Report has been released. Total offenses in Lee County have decreased by 10.4 percent. This is good news for the county.
Gulf District Part I Crimes (burglaries, robberies, auto thefts) have increased slightly by 7 percent. However, the arrests for these crimes have increased 34 percent, meaning we are putting more people in jail for these crimes. The largest increase was auto thefts with an increase of 69 percent. This may seem a large increase, but the total numbers were 13 auto thefts in 2009 and 22 auto thefts in 2010. This did raise our offense numbers and added to the percentage increase of Part I Crimes. We did have significant changes in our burglaries. Residential Burglaries were down 13 percent and Business Burglaries were down 36 percent. I believe this is due to the presence at all hours our deputies are patrolling.
As far a traffic statistics are concerned, the number of traffic tickets were down 24 percent, warnings were up 15 percent, traffic stops were up by 3 percent, and DUI arrests were up by 50 percent. I am sure this had an impact on the traffic fatalities in Gulf District, with a decrease of 50 percent.
We had three arsons this year compared to two in 2009. These arsons are being investigated by the State Fire Marshall’s Division and Gulf District Detective Bill Troutt. This is a very active investigation and forensic leads are being followed up on every day. I am confident they will be solved.
I am eager to hear from the Island residents in regard to their concerns and request they be our eyes and ears in our Island community to make it safer for all.