Department Says Pontiac's Sheriff Takeover Is Working

Published On: Oct 02 2011 04:28:38 PM EDT   Updated On: Aug 16 2011 07:04:49 AM EDT
PONTIAC, Mich. -

The Oakland County Sheriff's Department took over patrols in Pontiac two weeks ago, and residents are starting to notice a difference.

Sheriff Michael Bouchard said police response times in Pontiac have improved 81 percent since the Sheriff's Department took over on July 31.

Bouchard said there were 60 arrests made in the first six days after the transition, and 220 arrests after two weeks. The department said no service call has gone unanswered.

Manny Estrada, of Pontiac, said he is happy to see the Sheriff's Department doing work. Estrada said he witnessed an arrest after a police chase, and he was amazed to see five deputies responding -- something he said was unheard of before the takeover.

"I think it's crazy," he said. "I'm happy."

Bouchard said the department is not only responding in Pontiac, but doing it quickly.

"There were about five major events last night: Shootings, or attempted carjackings or attempted murder. (For) the majority of them we made arrests last night," Bouchard said.

With 74 deputies and 50 Pontiac police officers on patrol in the city, the department said it has responded to all service calls in 14 minutes or less and all 911 calls under 6 minutes or less.

Crime statistics are on the rise in Pontiac. However, Bouchard said crime is on its way down. He said crime stats will increase due to the increase and efficiency of his department's response.

"Now we are reporting it and making arrests on it," he said.

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