County police named agency of the year

Polk County Police Officer Andy Anderson (from left), Chief Kenny Dodd and Officer Thomas Howard pose with the 2020 Area Agency of the Year award after being recognized at the May 3 work session of the county commission.

The Polk County Police Department was recognized twice during the May work session of the Polk County Commission.

Officers Andy Anderson and Thomas Howard were recognized for their actions during the March 25th severe storms when they responded to a serious chainsaw related injury.

Commission Chair Hal Floyd read a letter of commendation from Cpl. Robbie Akins, the two officers’ superior, detailing the pair’s actions when responding to a call on Lees Chapel Road in Cedartown where a man had suffered a serious chainsaw injury to his leg.

Officer Anderson and Officer Howard took immediate action to control the bleeding until the arrival of EMS, which was delayed because of the storm damage and utility trucks in the area following the storms.

The letter states that the officers applied trauma gauze and a tourniquet to the injury.

“EMS later advised that the action of these two officers very likely saved the young man’s legs,” the letter states.

“So thank you for your service. Thank you for what you did that night, and we appreciate all that you do,” Floyd told the officers.

The department was also recognized for being awarded the 2020 Agency of the Year by the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety for the 10-county Mountain Area. The award was given to the Polk County Police Department because of its outstanding work in the area of traffic enforcement.

Police Chief Kenny Dodd has also requested that the commission look into approving the purchase of body cameras for officers as opposed to dashboard cameras for new police cars.

Dodd said he hopes to save close to $11,000 by putting in for purchasing 12 body cameras instead of six new dashboard cameras. Currently, only a few county police officers — including K-9 officers and ordinance enforcement — wear body cameras.

“A lot of the time dash cameras don’t capture everything,” Dodd said. “This way we can provide a more accurate account of any encounter our officers come across.”

Dodd said they are also looking into making their data storage for all of their camera recordings more efficient and cost effective. He expects to have a proposal for the body cameras presented to the county’s finance committee at its next meeting.

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