Village of south Vienna suspending it's PD, some residents have concerns

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Village of south Vienna suspending it's PD, some residents have concerns

Post by M-Quigley » ... QAQ7MELUY/
For the foreseeable future, the Clark County Sheriff’s Office deputies will respond to emergency calls in South Vienna.

“It’s a very quiet farm community. Like they don’t even have a grocery store anymore,” South Vienna resident Dawn Shirley said.

Mayor Toni Keller told News Center 7 that the village has two officers and a temporary acting chief.

The village doesn’t have enough coverage, so its council voted to suspend the department.

In a statement, in part, Keller said:

“The Village has had difficulty attracting and retaining police officers to work the shifts required to consistently maintain the health and safety of the residents of South Vienna.”
South Vienna is east of the center of Springfield. I used to live in a small town outside of a big city and they were able to staff their PD with a mix of paid officers and volunteers, but then the required academy hours was 350, and you could work in the daytime and get the training at nights for part of it. I hear the number of hours is about twice that now.
Keller said for some time now, the village has contracted with the Sheriff’s Office to have a deputy on duty for 40 hours a week.

Dawn Shirley has lived in South Vienna for nearly a year and a half, and even though she feels pretty safe in the village, she has some concerns.

What my main concern is, is just how long it would take somebody to get out here, if there’s something really serious happening. How long would it take them to get here from Springfield or wherever they’re coming from London, wherever,” Shirley said.

In another part of Keller’s statement, she said the police department will be:

“Comprised of a sole member, the Village Marshall (aka the Chief of Police) who will work closely with the Clark County Sheriff to ensure the safety of the residents of the Village of South Vienna.”

I’ve never had a problem, I can probably sleep with my door open and unlocked. But you just never know,” Shirley said.
Although I now live way out in the sticks, I didn't grow up or work in a rural area, and I'm just used to locking my doors at night, just can't get used to the idea of sleeping with doors unlocked, windows up, etc. It's probably a good thing though, because when we first moved out here we had someone walk around the house at 3am in the wintertime, trying all the doors and windows. The snowfall was fresh that night so you could see where the guy walked from the road to the south side of the house, went around it and then ran off from the north side of the house to a waiting car. The guy had big feet and left a big impression in the snow when he fell running to the car. The local deputy suspected it was someone from the city who did it, very unusual but it can happen and they occasionally got suspicious vehicle calls at the time from other residents.

Although we've never had any further incidents like that in over 2 decades, I still lock the doors and windows at night. If you have to call 911 for a deputy the response time might be a few minutes it might be a half hour, according to a deputy at the time, depending on staffing at the time of the call and where they have to respond from. Thankfully this area has not any violent crime in many decades that I'm aware of. (yet) The nearest small city had a bank robbery many years ago, but the guy was known in the very small town and was seen walking from the bank back to his place about a block away. :roll: IDK if he even had a gun or not, but he made some kind of a threat. Back when that town had a PD all they ever did was traffic violations from people driving through on the state highways going thru the town. South Vienna must be smaller than them because they at least still have a grocery store. (a very small one) I think they stay in business from people who don't want to drive all the way to the big city for stuff.
South Vienna does at least have a Dollar General, and so does the nearest small town to me.

I guess the residents of South Vienna should do what the residents in my area do, look out for themselves and each other.
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