Front-running Vanderburgh Co. Sheriff candidates speak on school safety

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Published: Jul. 12, 2022 at 6:30 PM CDT
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VANDERBURGH CO., Ind. (WFIE) - Noah Robinson and Jeff Hales have emerged as the front-runners in the race for Vanderburgh County Sheriff.

Robinson and Hale each have storied careers in law enforcement.

Robinson has been with the Vanderburgh County Sheriff’s Office since 2001.

Hales retired from the Evansville Police Department in 2019 after 20 years of service.

Each of them are well-versed in firearms and say that firearm safety is super important, but when it comes to safety in schools, that’s an entirely different story.

“I spent nearly 10 years supervising the school safety unit for the sheriff’s office, so I have a deep background and understanding of what it takes to keep schools safe,” says Robinson, “and for me, it’s extremely important that the sheriff’s office have a seat at the table when it comes to designing schools and staffing schools.”

“I think what we need to do is start listening to more people in the community and their ideas for our school safety,” says Hales, “as far as guns, it’s not just something that the sheriff’s department can handle, or the police department can handle, or even the EVSC.”

While they have similar opinions on the issue of safety in schools regarding firearms, they differ a bit on their strategies for how to handle it.

“A crime prevention unit with the sheriff’s department, developing a two-man crime prevention unit. Possibly basing that two-man crime prevention unit at North High School, and then that would give the school resource officers the ability to move out to their schools,” says Hales.

“I’m in favor of having school resource deputies in our schools. I will advocate for more school resource deputies in our schools,” says Robinson, “what I’m not in favor of is just picking deputies or officers and throwing them into a school, and expecting them to measurably increase the safety there.”

No matter who wins the seat in November, each candidate is looking to do their part in ensuring that local kids are safe in schools.

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