Sheriff seeks funds to keep deputies in elementary schools

resource officers elementary sheriff Jeffrey Moore nwfdn

Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Deputy Jeffrey Moore on duty at Longwood Elementary School Tuesday. The Sheriff’s Office placed school resource officers in elementary schools after last month’s shooting in Newtown, Conn.

DEVON RAVINE | Northwest Florida Daily News
Published: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 at 12:03 PM.

CRESTVIEW — Okaloosa County Sheriff Larry Ashley on Tuesday asked county commissioners to help pay a portion of the $1.5 million needed to keep deputies in every elementary school through the end of June.

Ashley was joined by Superintendent of Schools Mary Beth Jackson when he made his request at the board’s meeting.

The proposal drew support from Commissioners Kelly Windes, Nathan Boyles and Wayne Harris, but the board postponed a vote until Jan. 22.

Ashley told commissioners he “never thought he’d see the day” when he had to ask for money to protect school children “from the crime of our society.”

The shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., occurred Dec. 14. Ashley placed school resource officers in each of the county’s elementary schools Dec. 17.

“I took officers off of patrol,” Ashley said. “I took officers off of the traffic unit. … I took officers off of court security.”

Now he’s looking for a way to pay for that shuffle.

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