DISPATCHER HEATHER MCCULLERS RACES AGAINST THE CLOCK TO EVACUATE SCHOOL FOLLOWING BOMB THREAT

A Walton County High School is evacuated following a bomb threat. A suspicious person tells someone on campus the bomb will detonate in 10 minutes. Walton County Sheriff’s Office Dispatcher Heather McCullers races against the clock to coordinate the evacuation and stage resources with the deputy on scene. In honor of National Public Safety Telecommunications Week, Heather McCullers tells us her story!

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LITTLE BOY INVITES DEPUTIES TO THANKSGIVING DINNER, DISPATCHER BELINDA FARMER TAKES THE CALL

A Thanksgiving 911 call makes national news after a little boy does the unexpected. Walton County Sheriff’s Office Dispatcher Belinda Farmer was on the receiving end of the line. In honor of National Public Safety Telecommunications Week, Belinda Farmer tells us her story!

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DISPATCHER BRANDI STEPHENSON HELPS WOMAN WHO GOES INTO LABOR ON THE SIDE OF THE INTERSTATE

A mother goes into labor while driving on Interstate 10 in Walton County, Florida. Dispatcher Brandi Stevenson takes the call and guides the woman through child birth. In honor of National Public Safety Telecommunications Week, Brandi Stephenson tells us her story!

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DISPATCHER KAREN PRATER CALMS SHOOTING VICTIM WHILE HELP IS EN ROUTE

A shooting in Walton County sparks an urgent response to a home miles from the nearest town. Walton County Sheriff’s Office Dispatcher Karen Prater goes to work to calm the victim and get help to their location. In honor of National Public Safety Telecommunications Week, Karen Prater tells us her story!

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CRIME STOPPERS WEEKLY WANTED

 The Walton County Sheriff’s Office is currently seeking information on the following subjects wanted out of our jurisdiction;

 Francis Marie Johnson– White female, 44 YOA, 5’10”, 116 Lbs., Brown hair, Brown eyes.   This subject is wanted on a Felony Violation of Probation Warrant for the original charge of Fraudulent Use of a Credit Card and Forgery of a Credit card Invoice.  She was last seen in Walton County Florida.

James Harlan Pope– White male, 51 YOA, 5’10”, 200 lbs., Brown hair, Brown eyes.  This subject is wanted on a Felony Violation of Probation for the original charge of Failure to Remit Sales Tax $ 100,000 +.  He was last seen in Walton County Florida.

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APRIL IS CHILD ABUSE AWARENESS MONTH

Child Abuse Awareness MonthFor Immediate Release

April 3, 2017

Walton County, Fla— Every 10 seconds a child abuse report is made.

In an effort to help spread awareness for child abuse during the month of April, Walton County Sheriff’s Office is hoping to spread the message about the effects of child abuse.

Nearly 700,000 children are abused in the United States every year. Of those abused, 1,850 die per year. Children can spend a lifetime trying to forget a few minutes of their childhood. Verbal and emotional abuse is just as damaging as physical abuse. Child abuse can cast a shadow that lasts a lifetime.

Help us prevent it. Children should be seen, heard, and believed. To report suspected child abuse call 1-800-96-ABUSE.

We are circulating a short video on our social media channels put together by the WCSO Criminal Investigations Bureau highlighting some of these alarming facts.

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WCSO 5th ANNUAL “FAMILY FUN” ART CONTEST

5th Annual Family Fun Art ContestFor Immediate Release

April 1st 2017

Walton County, Fla— April is Child Abuse Prevention Month and the Walton County Sheriff’s Office is looking for some talented young artists to help spread awareness.

During the month of April, children attending Walton County schools are encouraged to share their artwork that displays safe family fun activities enjoyed with their loved ones.

There will be three age categories: 5-10, 11-14, and 15-17. The winners in each age group will have their pictures shared on the Sheriff’s Office Facebook Page and displayed in the Sheriff’s Office. They will also receive a prize!

“This is a great way for us to engage our youth in the community while educating them on the issue of child abuse prevention,” said Sheriff Michael Adkinson.

Submissions must be received by April 18th and may be dropped off at WCSO North Administration, 752 Triple G Road, DeFuniak Springs, FL, or the Santa Rosa Beach substation, 133 Sheriff Drive, between the hours of 8-5, Monday-Friday. You may also mail submissions to: Walton County Sheriff’s Office, PIO, 752 Triple G Road, DeFuniak Springs, FL 32433. Please include name of child and age, as well as a contact number for the parent/guardian on the back of the artwork. We ask that the child reside in Walton County or attend Walton County Schools. Please do not use any paper larger than 11×7.

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BUS DRIVERS LEARN HOW TO DEAL WITH VIOLENT ENCOUNTERS

17622455_10208997378067113_844670805_oFor Immediate Release

March 29, 2017

DeFuniak Springs, Fla— Typically buses are the ones delivering students to the classroom, but today in Walton County the buses became the classroom.

Wednesday a group of Walton County School District bus drivers experienced a hands-on training dealing with violent encounters on school buses. School Resource Deputies Jeremy Fisher and Nathan Hicks taught the A.L.I.C.E curriculum to a group of 40 drivers.

A.L.I.C.E (Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate) Training is an instructor led class preparing individuals on how to proactively handle the threat of an aggressive intruder or active shooter.

“Protection and safety must be a priority in these types of events,” said Deputy Jeremy Fisher. “Especially in situations where we are responsible for guarding our most valuable assets—our children.”

According to the company’s website ALICE Training “provides options and classes that address the unique challenges specific to Police/LE, K-12 Schools, Healthcare Facilities, Higher Education, Businesses, Government, and Houses of Worship.”

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WCSO DEPUTY ARRESTED FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

NEWSFor Immediate Release

March 26, 2017

DeFuniak Springs, Fla— A Walton County Sheriff’s Deputy has been put on administrative leave following his arrest in Okaloosa County.

Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office contacted WCSO at approximately 1:30pm Sunday in reference to an arrest regarding a domestic violence incident in their jurisdiction involving Deputy Aaron Bingham.

“We take these types of situations very seriously,” said Sheriff Michael Adkinson. “We appreciate the professionalism of the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office in handling this case and hope to have it resolved quickly.”

Further action will be determined at the conclusion of the criminal and administrative investigations.

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ALABAMA SUBSTITUTE TEACHER; CHAPERONE ARRESTED IN WALTON COUNTY FOR SPRING BREAK OPEN HOUSE PARTIES BACK-TO-BACK NIGHTS

For Immediate Release

March 24, 2017

Santa Rosa Beach, Fla— A senior trip ends in the arrest of a substitute teacher out of Montgomery, Alabama following a complaint of a naked female in the roadway early Friday morning.

March 24th at approximately 12:35am deputies responded to the area of Sandcastles Court, in reference to a young naked female in the roadway with two males. When deputies arrived they observed two highly intoxicated individuals exiting the house at 43 Sandcastles Court.

One of the men, Mr. Walton McClendon Johnson, 28, stated he was the guardian and there were underage students inside the house drinking in their rooms. He advised he was aware of the illegal consumption of alcohol by minors, but that he did not provide the alcohol to them.

The deputies approached the home and noticed several open containers of alcohol visible through the door’s window. The deputies knocked and were allowed inside and located several cases of beer and several bottles of liquor. All of the alcohol was in plain view and accessible to everyone in the house.

Everyone in the house knew the alcohol was there and was participating in the party. Marijuana smoke was present in the home and several containers of marijuana and controlled pills were located throughout the kitchen and living room.

The deputies on scene arrested 21 people for minor in possession of alcohol, mostly boys, and all were transported to the Walton County Jail. Thirteen other juveniles were released with a notice to appear. Thursday morning a chaperone from the same school district, Misty Dell Brooks, 42, was also arrested for open house party after deputies found several underage students, mostly girls, with alcohol.

Mr. Johnson was charged with 13 counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor and open house party.

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