Forsyth County Sheriff-elect Ron Freeman recently spoke to the Cumming chapter of the Vietnam Veterans of America.
Freeman told the group, which meets at 7 p.m. on the first Tuesday of each month at the Georgia National Guard Readiness Center on Aquatic Circle, that his priorities upon taking office in January will be reducing illegal drugs – his main goal – and improving traffic safety.
“We had more overdose deaths in Forsyth County on a per-capita basis than downtown Atlanta,” he said. “We had 28 overdose deaths last year in this county.”
He said he intends to increase the number of deputies specifically assigned to drug enforcement.
According to Marty Farrell of the local Vietnam veterans group, Freeman responded to a question about the increasing number of auto crashes due to texting and driving with an intention to institute a “public education campaign followed by the use of undercover deputies watching specifically for distracted drivers.”
Freeman said he would, for a time, issue warnings followed by citations.
“Listen, all I want them to do is stop texting,” he said. “We’ve got to do something.”
He also said the “current narrative that everyone hates cops and everyone wants to shoot police officers is a false media bias.”
“He added that there are some groups who do dislike police and admits the danger level has increased for the men and women in law enforcement,” Farrell said, “but his experience in this community is that the vast majority of people support police agencies.