April 23, 2009

Crime Statistics show increase in 2008

Monroe County - Crime Statistics recently released by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement show that major index crimes for Monroe County increased in 2008.

The report shows that major index crime in the County - excluding the city of Key West - increased by 4.9% during last year. Most of the increase can be attributed to the crimes of Burglary and Larceny (Theft and Grand Theft). Burglary increased by 73, going from 406 to 479; Larceny by 145, going from 1,435 to 1,580. Rape increased in 2008, but the actual numbers of rapes are very small in the county - there were 8 in 2007 and 13 in 2008.

The crimes of Robbery, Aggravated Assault and Motor Vehicle Theft all decreased. Robbery went from 18 in 2007 to 15 in 2008; Aggravated Assault dropped dramatically from 224 in 2007 to 150 in 2008; the county saw 123 vehicle thefts in 2007 and only 85 in 2008.

"The fact that property crimes are the areas where we are seeing the biggest increase is indicative of the economic times," said Sheriff Bob Peryam. "People are out of work, they are hurting for money and some people may be turning to crime in an effort to make ends meet. We have to be vigilant, and we need the help of the public to combat this increase in crime," he said.

The Sheriff urges the public to take extra precautions to avoid becoming a victim of crime.

"Many of these types of crimes are crimes of opportunity," he said. "They are, in many instances, easily preventable by locking doors and windows, locking your car - just don't allow yourself to be victimized by criminals who are out there looking for an easy target."

Tough budget times means all government agencies are trying to do more with less. In 2007, the Monroe County Sheriff's Office cut 18 certified law enforcement positions from it's budget. That is 18 fewer officers - 13 of them deputy sheriff positions. With fewer officers on the streets, this makes citizen cooperation even more important.

"We must work together to protect our community. We want it to remain the safe, secure place it has always been," said Sheriff Peryam.

April 20, 2009

Sheriff Peryam honors Employees of the Year

2008 Employees of the Year

Left to right: Reserve Dep. Emil LaVache, Det. Sgt. Lisa Lawson, Deputy Evan Calhoun,
Explorer John Humelsine, Advocate Elaine Woodson and Sheriff Bob Peryam

Click here for details of each award winner

In a special ceremony held Friday in Marathon, Sheriff Robert Peryam honored Monroe County Sheriff’s Office Employees of the Year for 2008.

"The people chosen as Employees of the Year are truly the best of the best – they have proven themselves to be outstanding employees, as well as outstanding contributors to the community they serve," said Sheriff Bob Peryam.

The yearly award winners received a plaque from the Sheriff in recognition of their exemplary work, and a badge to wear on their uniforms with the designation "Officer (or Employee) of the Year". In addition, they each receive a check for $500.00 donated by TIB Bank, and $1,000.00 from the Sheriff’s Office. The Cadet of the year receives $100.00 from TIB Bank, with a matching amount from the Sheriff’s Office.

The Cormier Memorial Award, given to the Sheriff’s Office Sworn Law Enforcement Officer of the Year, is named for Deputy David Cormier, a Sheriff’s Reserve Deputy killed in the line of duty in a traffic accident in November of 1989. Members of the Cormier family attended the ceremony in memory of their loved one who gave his life in service to the community.

Recipients of the Award are:

April 20, 2009

Motorcycle event may cause traffic delays

Approximately 600 motorcycles will visit the Keys Sunday, May 3rd in a as part of the Police Officer Assistance Trust (POAT) Semi-Annual Cops Ride for Kids event.

The motorcycles will arrive in Monroe County at around 10 a.m., riding from Homestead to Holiday Isle Resort in Islamorada on Highway U.S. One. The event is expected to cause some traffic delays on that day, as the motorcycles enter Monroe County and travel to Holiday Isle. According to a message sent out by POAT, all proceeds from this ride will benefit Holiday Gifts for Surviving Children.

Since 1990, POAT has provided holiday gifts to each of the minor children of law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty or on active duty while serving the citizens of Miami-Dade County.  This ride will begin at the Miami-Dade County Law Enforcement Officers Memorial, located at Tropical Park, 7900 SW 40 Street, Miami, Florida. 

Whether you ride a motorcycle or just want to help with a small donation, help make the holidays a little brighter for these deserving children by joining the ride, or by making a donation. There is a $20 registration fee for riders; donations are also accepted from non-riders.

For more information about this event, contact:

Rudy Gonzalez, Secretary
Police Officer Assistance Trust
9105 NW 25th Street #2088
Doral, Florida 33172-1500
Phone (305) 471-2312

April 17, 2009

Bike event to effect traffic in Key Largo May 2nd and 3rd

An annual bike event scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, May 2nd and 3rd, 2009 is expected to cause traffic delays in the upper Keys. Travelers should plan extra time if they are going to be driving through the Key Largo area on those days.

Lt. Corey Bryan is coordinating security for the event, which is expected to attract 2,400 bicyclers to the upper Keys. Event organizers pay for officers to work the special duty detail.

He says the Maroone MS 150 Bike Tour, which raises money for Multiple Sclerosis, usually causes the most problems with traffic on Saturday afternoon, between noon and 5 p.m., but people will begin seeing bicyclers on Card Sound Road and in the Keys around 9 a.m. that day. Deputies working the event will be specifically stationed on Card Sound Road, and at the 106 and 102 mile markers of the highway.

The riders travel from Miami-Dade County on Card Sound Road, then on Highway U.S. One to John Pennekamp State Park. They leave the Keys the following Sunday morning, beginning at 7 a.m. and travelers can expect delays on that morning as well, until about 9:30 a.m. with heavy bike traffic on Card Sound Road until about 11 a.m.

April 15, 2009

"The Conch Republic
Thin Blue Line Miniature Golf Challenge".

This Miniature Golf Challenge is a fundraising event to benefit the Russell Sullivan Scholarship Fund. This fund is administered by Florida Keys Community College. The fund is to be used to supply scholarship funds to young adults in the Keys interested in pursuing a career in Law Enforcement. 

The event will be held at Boondocks Restaurant and Miniature Golf Course on Ramrod Key and will run from Sunday 19th - Sunday the 26th of April. Golfers will be allowed to enter the tournament any day between 10am and 10pm Sunday through Friday, and 10am to 8pm Saturday the 25th. Adults will pay $15/entry and Children 12 years and under will pay $10/ entry. $5 of each entry will go to Boondocks; the rest will be the funds of the scholarship. 

The top 8 from each group will be called on Saturday night, and will be invited back to compete in the finals Sunday at 3pm. There will be two 50/50 raffles. One will be drawn at 3:30 and one at 5:30. Possibly a third if the crowd is still around at 7pm. Prizes will be awarded on Sunday.

There are fabulous prizes for the winners and the money raised goes to a good cause - not to mention it will be a lot of fun!

Celebrity bartenders will be at the golf course from 6-8pm Sunday through Saturday. During that time all tips will go to the fund. 

April 7, 2009

Next week is Telecommunicators Week

April 12-18, 2009 has been proclaimed National Public Safety Telecommunications Week and the City of Key West and Monroe County Board of County Commissioners are recognizing the diligence and professionalism of our Telecommunicators and Call takers who serve in our communications centers.

For forty years 9-1-1 has served as the vital link between the American public and emergency services, and it is with great pride that our highly skilled Public Safety Dispatchers who have contributed substantially to the apprehension of criminals, suppression of fires, and treatment of patients be recognized for their efforts.

Proclamation ceremonies will take place at the monthly commission meetings at both the City of Key West and Monroe County Commissions during April.

Monroe County Sheriff’s Animal Farm - April and May Open House Schedule