Magnolia Springs citizens calling Town Hall in place of Sheriff’s Department

By Jessica Vaughn
Posted 8/14/19

MAGNOLIA SPRINGS - Magnolia Springs Town Hall has been experiencing issues lately with citizens calling to report suspicious or out-of-line behavior to the town instead of the Baldwin County …

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Magnolia Springs citizens calling Town Hall in place of Sheriff’s Department

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MAGNOLIA SPRINGS - Magnolia Springs Town Hall has been experiencing issues lately with citizens calling to report suspicious or out-of-line behavior to the town instead of the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Department. Town Clerk Jenny White states she cannot call the Sheriff’s Department on citizens’ behalf, leading to many problems going unresolved.

The discussion began when councilmember Ben Dykema expressed concerns about the ongoing problem at Magnolia Springs’ public accesses where vehicles congregate over the weekend, blocking roads and driveways.

“There’s a little disenchantment that we are able to put signs that say, ‘do this, don’t do that,’ but in terms of enforcing our no parking signs or our sunrise to sunset signs we don’t have a lot of police enforcement,” said Dykema. “We have a security guard, but we’re mainly depending on the best natures of the people who are using these accesses. It’s a problem looking for a solution, and I don’t have it.”

Deputy Greg Smith says the biggest issue the Sheriff’s Department has is most times he learns about any weekend problems on Monday morning, far too late for anything to be done about it. Instead of calling the Sheriff’s Department when witnessing misbehavior, Smith states many people wait until Monday to call Town Clerk Jenny White and report the issue to her.

“You’ve got to call us when something’s going on,” Smith said. “There’s someone around the town 24/7, and we’re going to respond to all calls … But unless we know what’s going on, there’s nothing we can do. If you call, we’re coming. If we know what’s happening then we can address it case by case.”

White says during summer a big issue was children jumping off the bridge, and that she received calls daily from citizens who requested she call the Sheriff’s Department to report it happening. She handed out the department’s number each day, as she was unable to call the information in.

“A lot of people don’t want to be the ones calling into the Sheriff’s Department to report things, but I can’t call to report something I’m not witnessing myself,” White said. “That’s what I keep telling citizens when they call in: if you see something going on, no matter what time of day, call the Sheriff’s Department right then.”

The Baldwin County Sheriff’s Department can be reached at 251-972-6802, and they encourage Magnolia Springs citizens to give them a call if they witness illegal or out-of-line behavior.