WCFR FIREFIGHTERS HELP A MOTHER GIVE BIRTH TO A BABY GIRL

For Immediate Release

September 29, 2017

DeFuniak Springs, Fla — Local firefighters help a mother give birth to a baby girl in the back of an ambulance Wednesday.

Just before 5:00 PM, the Walton County Sheriff’s Office received a call in reference to a 21-year-old woman who was in labor. Walton County Fire Rescue Medic 4 arrived on scene to find the woman lying on her side in her bed. The patient stated that she was 37 weeks pregnant and experiencing contractions.

While being transported to a local hospital, Walton County Fire Rescue Firefighter/Paramedic Austin Pugh and Firefighter/EMT Dawson Beale helped the DeFuniak Springs woman give birth to a baby girl weighing 6 lbs. 5 oz.

“These are the moments that make it all worth it,” says Sheriff Michael Adkinson. “Many times, first responders deal with incidents with unfortunate outcomes, so when you get to experience a blessing like this, it reminds you why you do what you do.”

Firefighter/Paramedic Pugh and Firefighter/EMT Beale stopped by the hospital yesterday to visit with the family. The mother and baby are happy and healthy.

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LEADING THE WAY FOR MENTAL HEALTH REFORM FOR INMATES

Bogle PhotoFor Immediate Release

September 29, 2017

DeFuniak Springs, Fla— Mental health is now being addressed head-on at the Walton County Jail.

Walton County Sheriff’s Office has hired a Mental Health Treatment Manager who is assisting in developing a substance abuse and mental health treatment program for inmates.

“It’s a population that has a really strong need,” said Tamara Bogle, who is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the State of Florida.

Originally from Panama City, Florida Bogle is a Mosley High School graduate. She earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from Florida State University and her Master’s Degree in Clinical Social Work from The University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and Practice.

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“The majority of jails just assess and stabilize,” said Bogle. “It turns into a catch and release program. What we’re trying to do is assess, stabilize and treat.”

Bogle’s goal is to head off the problem by providing services within the walls of the jail that will help reduce recidivism before inmates return to their communities.

“We want to make sure we are helping people while they are here so they don’t find themselves coming back to us,” said Sheriff Michael Adkinson. “This is yet another step in reducing the cycle of incarceration.”

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Intensive group therapy coupled with individual sessions Bogle describes the method as restructuring the way each individual thinks so that they can handle situations on their own when facing difficult circumstances.

 

“They have made mistakes, they’ve made bad decisions and I don’t think any of them would deny that,” said Bogle. “But, these are good people and all of them have an opportunity to change. They just need a little help getting there.

Tamara has over eight years of experience providing clinical services within the correctional field, and is excited to build a comprehensive mental health treatment program within the Walton County Jail.

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WALTON COUNTY JAIL INTRODUCES SOUND TRAINING FOR INMATES

Sound Training PICFor Immediate Release

September 26, 2017

DeFuniak Springs, Fla— Walton County Jail inmates will now have a chance at learning to read and write.

“We find that a lot of the population in our jail is either way below reading level or functionally illiterate,” said Sheriff Michael Adkinson.

That’s why Walton County Sheriff’s Office is in the beginning stages of implementing “Sound Training Reform”. Created in Middlesbrough, England the reading program is proven to increase reading ages of participants by an average of 27 months in just six weeks. The Walton County Jail is the first incarceration facility in the United States to pilot the program.

Sound training consists of six, one hour sessions delivered over a six week period. A tutor, trained by the program’s founder and creator Katy Parkinson, leads a group of four inmates through a variety of activities designed to close the literacy gap.

As well as improving inmate’s reading ability and comprehension, Sheriff Adkinson hopes the program will reduce recidivism.

“What we’ve done is try to determine the needs of the inmates and how to make them successful,” said Adkinson. “For anyone to be successful in life it’s critical they have the ability to read and write.”

“Reading is hopefully part of the jigsaw puzzle that will allow them to reintegrate into the community,” said Parkinson. “And, hopefully, give something back,”

“This is another step in trying to break the cycle of incarceration,” said Adkinson.

The first four inmates have been selected to be a part of the program’s pilot at the Walton County Jail and have already begun participating in the training phase.

Learn more about Sound Training and Lexonik, it’s parent company, here.

 

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THIRD SUSPECT IN PAXTON HOME INVASION ROBBERY IN CUSTODY

TERRY MUG SHOTFor Immediate Release

September 25, 2017

Paxton, Fla— A third suspect identified in a home invasion robbery in Paxton is behind bars.

Anthony Antron Wilkins, 35, was the first arrested September 20th for his involvement in the June 27th incident when he and two others, Vance Gettis and Dawellyne Terry, robbed a home healthcare nurse at gunpoint.

The three men kicked in the front door of a house on Richerson Road around 10pm and struck the victim in the face, made her strip, and zip tied her hands together. The suspects disassembled the victim’s phone and ransacked the home searching for valuables before fleeing the scene.

“No one should have to go through what this victim experienced,” said Sheriff Michael Adkinson.

Shortly after the incident Walton County Sheriff’s Office investigators were able to identify the three suspects.Home Invasion.jpg

The third suspect Dawellyne Terry, 22, turned himself in to the Walton County Jail this afternoon. He is charged with home invasion robbery with a firearm, a first degree felony. Anthony Wilkins was released from the Walton County Jail today on a $50,000 bond. Gettis is currently incarcerated in Covington County on unrelated charges and his extradition is pending.

“The hard work by our investigators put this case to rest,” said Adkinson. “Now the courts will decide their fate.”

READ THE ORIGINAL RELEASE HERE.

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LOCAL MAN SENTENCED TO LIFE IN PRISON AFTER FIRING A SHOTGUN AT HIS NEIGHBOR

For Immediate Release

September 21, 2017

Bruce, Fla— James Farrell Davis, Jr., 58, of Bruce has been sentenced to life in prison after shooting his neighbor during an altercation over dogs he claimed were missing from his home.

On May 21, 2014 Davis approached a female neighbor and accused her of taking his dogs that were missing. A male resident of the home heard a commotion and walked outside to find Davis pointing a shotgun at the female victim. Davis turned the gun on the male victim and threatened to kill him.

When the male resident retreated to his house to protect the three children inside, Davis followed him to the doorway and attempted to enter the home while pointing the shotgun at the victim. The two began to struggle when the gun went off, firing a round into the male resident’s abdomen. The victim quickly grabbed a hammer and smashed Davis over the head until he could rid him of his shotgun.

Walton County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrived on scene to find Davis wounded on the front porch armed with a handgun. Deputies quickly secured the gun and detained the shooter. Walton County Fire Rescue paramedics treated the victim and the shooter at the scene before transporting them to a local hospital. Davis was later booked into the Walton County Jail where he awaited trial.

On Tuesday, Walton County Circuit Judge Kelvin Wells sentenced James Farrell Davis, Jr. to life in prison for attempted first-degree murder, aggravated assault, burglary with a firearm and shooting into a building.

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HOME INVASION ROBBERY SUSPECTS IDENTIFIED, TWO IN CUSTODY

For Immediate Release

September 20, 2017

Paxton, Fla— Three suspects have been identified and two men are behind bars following an investigation into a home invasion robbery in Paxton.

On June 27th, around 10:00 PM, the Walton County Sheriff’s Office responded to a 911 call at a home on Richerson Road regarding a home invasion robbery with a firearm. The victim told deputies around 9:30PM three masked men armed with handguns kicked in the front door of the home where she worked as a home Healthcare Nurse.

The victim was then struck in the face with the handgun, made to strip, and her hands zip tied together. The suspects disassembled the victim’s phone and ransacked the house searching for valuables before fleeing the scene.

Walton County Sheriff’s Office Investigators were able to identify three suspects including Vance Gary Gettis, 29, of Paxton, Florida and Anthony Antron Wilkins, 35, of Florala, Alabama.

“These investigators refused to give up on this case,” says Sheriff Michael Adkinson, “and because of their hard work and dedication, three dangerous men have been identified.”

Anthony Wilkins has been arrested on outstanding warrants for his involvement in the robbery home invasion with a firearm and was transported and booked into the Walton County Jail where he is being held on a $50,000 bond. Vance Gettis is currently incarcerated in Covington County on unrelated charges and his extradition is pending. This is still an ongoing investigation and a third arrest is expected.

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WANTED WEDNESDAY – JEREMY ALAN SIMONDS

Jeremy thinks it’s okay to steal people’s property. We disagree with Jeremy, which is why he’s today’s featured felon! Jeremy Alan Simonds, 35, is wanted for felony burglary.

He was last seen in the 400 block of Kings Lake Boulevard in DeFuniak Springs.

If you have any information on Jeremy’s whereabouts please call the Walton County Sheriff’s Office at (850)-892-8111 or you can remain anonymous by calling Emerald Coast Crime Stoppers at (850) 863-TIPS. Submit a web tip at http://www.emeraldcoastcrimestoppers.com/ or send a mobile tip using the P3 Tips Mobile Application.

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SEXUAL PREDATOR ADDRESS NOTIFICATION – RICKY HARRISON

Defuniak Springs, Fla— Ricky Lee Harison was found guilty of lewd or lascivious battery upon a person older than 12, but younger than 16 in Bay County, Florida.

Harrison’s address is 389 Mims Road, DeFuniak Springs, Florida 32433. He registered as a sexual predator on September 19th.  He is 51 years of age, stands at approximately 5’07”, and weighs 140 pounds.

There are currently (23) sexual predators and (137) sex offenders living in Walton County.

Walton County Sheriff’s Office encourages families to visit www.flsexoffender.net to subscribe to receive e-mail alert notifications when registered sexual offenders or predators move into neighborhoods. WCSO also encourages citizens to use the neighborhood search feature prior to signing up for alerts to identify registered sexual offenders and predators currently living in neighborhoods.

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DEFUNIAK SPRINGS MAN ARRESTED AFTER BATTERING HIS PREGNANT GIRLFRIEND

Corbin Gainey

For Immediate Release

September 19, 2017

DeFuniak Springs, Fla— A DeFuniak Springs man is behind bars after slapping and choking his pregnant girlfriend.

On September 15th, the Walton County Sheriff’s Office received a call about a domestic violence incident in which a man had battered his girlfriend who is six months pregnant. The boyfriend, who was identified as Corbin John Gainey, 29, of DeFuniak Springs, got into an argument with his girlfriend outside of his home. During the argument, Gainey slapped the victim multiple times before choking her and then throwing her to the ground. The suspect also threw his girlfriend’s keys and phone so that she could not leave the scene or call 911 for help.

Just before 3:30 PM on September 17th, a WCSO deputy spotted Gainey sitting outside of his home in DeFuniak Springs. When the suspect saw the deputy, he immediately fled into the woods. WCI’s K-9 Unit began assisting WCSO deputies in tracking the suspect. Corbin Gainey turned himself in shortly after the search began.

Corbin John Gainey was subsequently arrested for domestic battery by strangulation, aggravated battery and depriving of 911 communication and was transported to the Walton County Jail.

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TURN ‘EM IN TUESDAY – TOMMY JAY SHELDON

Life’s all about choices. Some people don’t always make the best choices. Like Tommy here. Tommy Jay Sheldon, 35, is wanted for violating his probation following his arrest for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

If you see Tommy, let him know his P.O is not too happy with him, and the Walton County Sheriff’s Office is looking for him. He may be staying in the Panama City area.

If you have any information on Tommy’s whereabouts please call the Walton County Sheriff’s Office at (850)-892-8111 or you can remain anonymous by calling Emerald Coast Crime Stoppers at (850) 863-TIPS. Submit a web tip at http://www.emeraldcoastcrimestoppers.com/ or send a mobile tip using the P3 Tips Mobile Application.

Turn 'Em In Tuesday

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