Clinton drops out of 2020 sheriff’s race

News
Sheriff Chris Clinton

HIAWASSEE, Ga. – In an unexpected turn of events, Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton announced on his Facebook page Friday afternoon, Nov. 22, that he will no longer seek re-election in the 2020 sheriff’s race. Clinton’s announcement follows in its entirety.

“Sometimes, we get so busy doing things that others want us to do that we forget to listen to that still, small voice that should guide the faithful along,” Clinton wrote. “Crystal and I seem to be better at serving others than we are at taking care of our own health. I am humbled at the faith so many have in me, but I also feel the time has come for my family to move on to another chapter in our lives and I will no longer be seeking re-election as sheriff.

“I will always be thankful for some of the lasting friendships I have made – so many people I would have never met that have worked so hard to do so much for others. I will always cherish those memories and am a better man for the experience. There are some truly wonderful people in this area. I am honored to have gotten to know so many of them.

“The past three years have been especially difficult for my family. After taking care of my grandfather for the last two years of his life, we suddenly lost him and our friend and band mate in January, as well as two other family friends, all within about a month. Life is short and precious. The weight of it all has taken a toll on my health and my family’s well-being. While the community can find another to serve as sheriff, my wife and children only have me and it is time that I return to being just a husband and dad. It is time for our family to seek the things God has left for us to accomplish. One thing Crystal and I have left to do is raise a little boy and we would like to do that without the distraction of politics and all that comes with it.

“I am thankful for those who have placed their trust in me all these years. I am thankful for the superb staff at the sheriff’s office and for all of our volunteers who serve in so many ways. I intend to continue to offer Citizen Law Enforcement Academy courses in the coming year in the hope that the program will continue. We are beginning another effort to provide Christmas gifts for Towns County’s less fortunate children through the Towns County Sheriff’s Empty Stocking Fund and I hope I can count on all of you to continue to support these children again this year.

“I look forward to 2020 being the best of the thirteen years entrusted to me as Sheriff of Towns County and pray God’s continued blessings on our community.”

Follow FYN for additional information as it becomes available.

Towns County Sheriff Clinton defends violation of U.S. Constitution

News
Sheriff Clinton - Constitutional violation

HIAWASSEE, Ga. – A week has passed since a local reporter was denied entry to a meeting held at a government facility, and while the Towns County Republican Party and guest speaker, Chris Gaubatz, have extended apologies concerning the unconstitutional ban, Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton has defiantly defended his role in the civil rights violation.

Clinton, who takes to the air waves of a Union County-based radio station each weekday morning, was questioned about the highly controversial incident by the broadcast’s host Oct. 3. The sheriff divulged on live radio that he had, in fact, conversed with Gaubatz immediately prior to the ban and agreed that the reporter, Robin Webb, was justly targeted to prevent potential “bad press” within the conservative activism workshop.

Gaubatz later stated that his snap reaction stemmed from misleading information, presumably supplied by the sheriff, and expressed earnest regret over the handling of the situation. Towns County GOP Chairwoman Betsy Young, who did not attend the meeting, called the ban “not acceptable.”

Webb – whose regular beat includes local political coverage – held reservations for seating at the public event, accepted by the Towns County Republican Party.

Furthermore, Webb reported on Gaubatz last March without incident.  Click to read archive

Fetch Your News

Towns County GOP Vice Chair John Alger (left) en route with news of the media ban. Also pictured: Sheriff Chris Clinton (center) with Chris Gaubatz (right)

 

“Denying access was deliberate suppression of Freedom of Press set forth by an elected official sworn to uphold the Constitution,” Webb stated in reference to the sheriff’s participation in the ordeal.

True to form, Clinton attempted to portray the county reporter as a hostile, left-wing member of the media on the morning show. “We live in a country where the rules no longer apply to the Progressives…,” Clinton said in apparent support of the illicit ban, going on to talk about insurrection in Washington by the “Left.”

Civil rights’ attorneys have taken a keen interest in the unconstitutional act, calling the violation nothing short of illegal.

Towns County Attorney Robb Kiker issued a formal statement Oct. 2 on behalf of Towns County Commissioner Cliff Bradshaw, whom Kiker described as “prudent in protecting the integrity of the office.” Commissioner Bradshaw was not present at the event when the incident occurred, later learning details of the situation through third-party accounts.

“I understand Mr. Bradshaw personally expressed disappointment in the handling of the matter,” Attorney Kiker said. “This is characteristic of Mr. Bradshaw because I have always found him to be a strong supporter of the Constitution and, particular to this matter, the freedom of speech.”

Georgia laws requiring a transparent government were additionally called into question by Sheriff Clinton Oct. 3.  “It’s staggering the amount of taxpayer time and resources the ‘fake news’ wastes with open records requests about nonsense. It’s stalking,” Clinton, who frequently describes investigative media as “threatening,” claimed.

Sheriff Chris Clinton

Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton (left) with Chris Gaubatz at the time of the unconstitutional offense.

Open record requests filed by FYN in the past have revealed unsettling revelations, such as disproving troubling “facts” dispersed to the citizens by the sheriff himself and exposing the limited amount of time that Clinton has devoted to elected duty.

FYN submitted a request Oct. 2 to review the lead lawman’s cellular log on the evening that the media blackout occurred, a point that was negatively noted by the sheriff on-air. FYN expects to receive the legally-requested information from the Towns County Sheriff’s Office in coming days.

 

CAIR director, county attorney weigh in on controversial media ban

News
Sheriff Chris Clinton

HIAWASSEE, Ga. – CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations) Georgia Executive Director  Edward Ahmed Mitchell contacted FetchYourNews (FYN) Oct. 2, regarding a controversial incident occuring in Towns County last Thursday. Mitchell voiced staunch criticism toward a media ban initiated at an event sponsored by the Towns County Republican Party at the Towns County Civic Center. FYN previously reported denied entry into the “conservation activism workshop” featuring national security consultant Chris Gaubatz. Mitchell boldly described Gaubatz in the phone conversation as an “expert in anti-Islam.”

Mitchell, a former criminal prosecutor and journalist, chided that prohibiting media access was an illicit act due to the fact that the meeting was held at a government facility. Mitchell stated that he was “not surprised” that the incident had occurred, describing Gaubatz as “paranoid” and “not willing to be criticized.” What has caused greater concern, Mitchell said, was that Gaubatz’s decision to thwart media coverage was conducted “in partnership with the sheriff.”

Fetch Your News

Towns GOP 1st Chair John Alger returning the Towns County Homeland Security deputy’s identification when asked to leave the public facility. Also pictured: Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton (center) with Chris Gaubatz (right)

Gaubatz later extended an apology to FYN for prohibiting access to the “not super secret” meeting. Gaubatz explained that the decision to prevent entry was based on misleading information, presumably gained from Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton, who was witnessed engaged in conversation with Gaubatz at the time that FYN was asked to leave.

The news was delivered to the political reporter by Towns County GOP 1st Vice Chair John Alger who falsely termed the meeting an “executive session.” Alger was reported by a law enforcement officer inside of the meeting as making light of the situation with Sheriff Clinton, repeating the phrase “executive session” as the reason given for denial. The issue has left local conservatives calling for Alger’s resignation as a Republican officer. Towns County GOP Chair Betsy Young, who has voiced apologetic disapproval, stated that an executive board meeting will likely take place in the near future.

Based on information gathered from sources, FYN’s reporter defines the incident as “deliberate suppression of freedom of the press set forth by an elected official sworn to uphold the Constitution.”

CAIR Georgia is expected to issue an official statement on Gaubatz and the controversial incident, adding that the organization intends to contact the Towns County Republican Party and Towns County Sheriff’s Office concerning the matter.

Furthermore, a Towns County Emergency Management/Homeland Security deputy director who accompanied the reporter to the event was prevented from attending, despite reservations and official credentials presented to the speaker and the sheriff. The matter is under investigation by Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) at this time.

Sheriff Chris Clinton

Sheriff Chris Clinton with Chris Gaubatz at the Towns County Civic Center.

Towns County Attorney Robb Kiker issued a formal statement on behalf of Towns County Commissioner Cliff Bradshaw, whom Kiker described as “prudent in protecting the integrity of the office.” Commissioner Bradshaw was not present at the event when the incident occurred, later learning details of the situation through third-party accounts.

“I understand Mr. Bradshaw personally expressed disappointment in the handling of the matter,” Attorney Kiker said. “This is characteristic of Mr. Bradshaw because I have always found him to be a strong supporter of the Constitution and, particular to this matter, the freedom of speech.”

Towns County Republican Chair Betsy Young, Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton, and Security Consultant Chris Gaubatz did not respond to FYN’s invitation to comment on recent developments.

 

 

FYN archive: Chris Gaubatz event, March 2019:

Security consultant warns of merge between Progressive Left and Jihadi movement

 

Towns County GOP, security speaker apologize for media ban

News
Sheriff Chris Clinton

HIAWASSEE, Ga. – FetchYourNews (FYN) reported on social media Thursday evening that FYN’s entry into an event sponsored by the Towns County Republican Party was denied. Chris Gaubatz, an Islamic expert and author of “Muslim Mafia,” was the scheduled speaker. Gaubatz is a national security consultant whom FYN reported on in March without incident.

Click for archive

The topic of the Sept. 26 discussion was “conservative activism” with morning and evening workshops planned. The speaking engagement was held at the Towns County Civic Center, a government-owned facility with meeting space offered to the county’s dual political parties without charge. A $10 per person reservation fee was requested for the popular event, with attendance secured the week prior for FYN’s reporter and a guest.

Chriz Gaubatz

A sign announcing the meeting at the Towns County Civic Center.

The meeting, however, did not proceed as expected.

FYN’s reporter was advised soon after arrival by Towns County 1st Vice Chairman, John Alger, that FYN’s attendance was no longer welcome at the event, purported as relayed by speaker Gaubatz. Gaubatz was witnessed in conversation with Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton outside of the public building immediately prior to notification and throughout the ordeal. Alger, who claimed that he was “just the messenger,” falsely deemed the function an “executive session” to FYN. An executive session is a term for a time block within an otherwise open meeting in which minutes are taken separately, outsiders are not permitted, and the contents of the discussion are treated as confidential.

In addition to the media ban, FYN’s guest – a Towns County Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security deputy – was also denied entry after creditials were presented through Alger. The issue was promptly forwarded by the county official to local and state authorities for appropiate review.

Fetch Your News

Towns GOP 1st Chair John Alger returning a Towns County Homeland Security deputy’s identification after the official was refused entry. Also pictured: Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton (center) with Chris Gaubatz (right)

Towns County Republican Chairwoman Betsy Young, who did not attend the workshop, extended an earnest apology to FYN the following day. Young stated that the handling of the matter was “not acceptable.” Towns County Commissioner Cliff Bradshaw, who arrived at the civic center after the meeting began, additionally expressed disapproval.

Furthermore, Gaubatz contacted FYN’s reporter Monday, Sept. 30, offering sincere amends for the situation. Gaubatz relayed that while the decision was ultimately his, he did not understand the situation correctly, presumably based off questionable information received from Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton. “You being there would have been fine,” Gaubatz said in part. “I feel terrible…Looking back, I should have talked to you.” Gaubatz, who resides in Virginia, added that he hopes to personally meet with FYN’s reporter and the Homeland Security official when he returns to Towns County.

The incident has left local Republicans calling for GOP 1st Chair John Alger’s resignation due to his involvement in the situation.

Feature Image: Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton (left) with speaker Chris Gaubatz before the Republican-sponsored event.

 

FYN Archive:

Security consultant warns of merge between Progressive Left and Jihadi movement

Sheriff’s father publicly addresses rumors of drug rehab

News
sheriff rehab rumors

HIAWASSEE, Ga. – Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton joined the Mountain Movers and Shakers Friday, Sept. 27, as the group’s featured speaker. Clinton, who officially announced a 2020 bid for re-election last week, launched his campaign by speaking on several topics. The sheriff spoke highly of his department, frequently contrasting the prior administration’s history which led to Clinton’s special election to office in 2007.

Following Clinton’s address, Michael Clinton – the sheriff’s father – publicly delivered an unprompted statement denying pervasive rumors that the elected official has attended treatment for drug addiction.

Michael Clinton asserted that the sheriff’s policies are not objectionable, comparing the opposition to that of President Trump’s, therefore critics have resorted to personal attacks.

“It’s lies. I can’t stand people just going around telling lies about people,” Michael Clinton told the sizeable crowd. “So anyways, when you hear this stuff, know what it is. They can’t attack what he’s doing, but that before and after thing, if you had before and after pictures, I tell you what, they’d be x-rated. Back in Towns County, it was always rut season in Towns County, especially in the sheriff’s office, and there’s a big difference, and you a made a big change.”

Rutting season is a time in the fall when deer mate. Sheriff Clinton interrupted to add that he has heard of deputies, under the previous administration, bragging about “rut season” to other agencies.

“Your personal life is your business, but if your personal life ever embarrasses the sheriff’s office, you’re fired,” Michael Clinton said. “And (my son’s) Christian character is above reproach, so if y’all hear this junk, don’t listen to it. So if you really want to hear what it is, come and ask me when you see me at Ingles or whatever, but be prepared to tell me who told you it.”

Beyond agreement with the “rut season” remark, Sheriff Clinton did not dispute nor affirm his father’s statement.

Following dozens of inquiries from concerned citizens, FetchYourNews offered Sheriff Clinton an opportunity in February to suppress the widespread rumors of drug rehabilitation in an effort to dispel hearsay.

Clinton declined to address the prevalent issue, opting to permanently cease communication with the news network.

Feature Image: Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton, speaking to the Mountain Movers and Shakers, Sept. 27, 2019.

 

Fetch Your News is a now news network that covers Towns, Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Rabun, and Murray counties in northern Georgia, as well as Cherokee and Clay counties in western North Carolina.  

Fetch Your News attracts over 300,000 page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month, and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com with an up to 60,000 Facebook page reach.

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Clinton announces 2020 re-election bid for sheriff

News
Clinton

HIAWASSEE, Ga. – Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton made an appearance at the Thursday, Sept. 19, Towns County Republican Party meeting to publicly announce his intent to seek re-election in 2020.

“I am absolutely seeking your vote, your support, for my campaign in 2020,” Clinton said. “I plan to run for sheriff of Towns County again, and I’m going to be running based on my track record because I think our track record at the sheriff’s office is really second to none, certainly in the history of this county. I think the truth speaks for itself.”

Clinton was elected in 2007 following a special election. No challengers have officially announced candidacy for Office of the Sheriff at this time.

Related Archives

 

FetchYourNews attracts over 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month, and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com with a 60,000 Facebook page reach.

If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of our counties of coverage, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

Sheriff Clinton shares valuable emergency preparedness advice

Sheriff's Desk
Sheriff Chris Clinton

From the Desk of Towns County Sheriff Christopher M. Clinton:

There are a number of things that each family can do to be prepared for an emergency situation. There are any number of weather events that can create an emergency on a very large scale and for those who are unprepared the consequences can be devastating.

Events such as tornadoes, flooding, winter ice storms, heavy snow, and extreme cold don’t happen all the time, but when they do happen, families can be stranded for days without help. During a major event, it may take rescue workers and utility crews several days to reach certain locations. Tornadoes and winter storms may make roads impassible for long periods of time, in essence, trapping people in their homes and preventing help from getting to them until roads can be cleared. Other events, such as flooding, may require people to evacuate their homes.

Because these types of events can and do happen, there are some things that families should do to be prepared for an emergency. The Georgia Emergency Management Agency offers many tips. The following information is compiled in large part from their recommendations and I believe they are helpful if implemented:

  • Families should consider installing safety features in their homes. A NOAA weather radio can alert you to rapidly changing weather conditions and let you know if a serious event is likely. Smoke detectors and fire extinguishers should be in each home.
  • Home owners should regularly inspect their home for potential hazards such as items that can fall, break, or catch fire and correct these issues.
  • It is a good idea for family members to learn CPR and first aid, as well as how to use a fire extinguisher, or how and when to turn off water, gas, or electricity to the home.
  • Children should be taught how and when to call 9-1-1 for help.
  • Families should keep enough supplies, including medical supplies and medicines to last for at least three days.
  • Families should have a plan and discuss where to go in the home in the event of a severe thunder storm or tornado and what to do in the event of a flood. Children especially need to know and practice this.
  • In the event you need to evacuate your home you will need an emergency supply kit. A good kit should include enough water to last three days (one gallon of water per person per day), food that will not spoil, a change of clothes and shoes for each person, a blanket, or sleeping bag for each person, a first aid kit that includes any prescription medications, emergency tools, extra car keys, cash. Infants and disabled persons may need specialty items and they should be included. A kit should be ready to transport in easy to carry containers such as back packs or duffel bags.

While the possibility of experiencing a disaster is unpleasant to consider, having a well-considered, discussed, and practiced plan can make a tremendous difference in the safety of all concerned.

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. – FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. – For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

 

 

 

From the Desk of the Sheriff: Winter Weather Driving Hazards

Sheriff's Desk
Robin H Webb

From the Desk of Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton:

With the wintry weather of the past few days and the promise of more to come, it seems an appropriate time to talk about winter driving. It is always best not to drive during snowy or icy conditions. Whenever possible avoid driving during extreme winter weather. Even front-wheel-drive and four-wheel-`drive vehicles are susceptible to snow and ice. If you must drive, the following suggestions are meant as helpful tips to avoid increasing the risk.

During winter you should always make certain that your vehicle is prepared. Vehicle preparation should include keeping your vehicle properly tuned up and making sure that your tires are in good shape. Tires should be properly inflated and have a tread depth of at least an eighth inch. Always keep plenty of fuel in your vehicle’s tank and make sure that your battery is up to date and properly maintained.

There are several items that are recommended to be kept in your vehicle during cold weather. These are especially important if you are traveling long distances. Good items to have on hand include bottled water, a flashlight with extra batteries, spare warm clothing, a warm blanket or sleeping bag, jumper cables, snow chains, a tow strap, wooden matches in a water proof container, a fully charged cell phone, and road flares, safety triangles, or both, to make your vehicle more visible. Cat litter can be used as a traction aid, much like gravel, but is easier to carry in a vehicle.

Some things to consider when driving include slowing down by at least half the speed normally recommended and allowing at least twice the distance between your vehicle and another. Remember to use more gentle controls during slippery conditions. You should start, steer, and stop your vehicle in a gentle, steady, and smooth fashion. If you are breaking and your brakes start to lock, ease up on the pressure. If your rear wheels start to skid take your foot off the brake and steer the vehicle in the direction you want the front of the vehicle to go. Do not try to accelerate during a skid and never use cruise control during snowy, icy, or wet conditions.

If you become stuck or stranded in the snow, it is almost always better to stay with your vehicle and wait for help. If you run the vehicle to use the heater, be sure that the exhaust is not obstructed and always leave at least one window slightly open to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. Only leave your vehicle if you know exactly where you are and are certain that you will improve your conditions by doing so.

It is always better to stay off the roadways during winter weather conditions such as snow and ice. The information I have provided is by no means a comprehensive list and is only meant to offer some suggestions for being safer. All the preparation in the world cannot guarantee that you will arrive safely to your destination if you choose to drive in poor conditions. My first advice is that you not drive during extreme weather. If you must, please take precautions and drive carefully.

 

(Photo: Robin H. Webb/FYN – Towns County, GA – Dec. 8, 2017)

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. – FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. – For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

 

 

 

Sheriff Clinton Announces Christmas Parade; Empty Stocking Fund

Sheriff's Desk, Upcoming Events
Towns County Sheriffs Office Parade

From the Desk of Sheriff Chris Clinton:

This year, the Sheriff’s Christmas Parade will be Saturday, November 25, beginning at 5:30pm. The parade will start at the Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds and end at McConnell Memorial Baptist Church in Hiawassee. Anyone can enter the parade and participants are asked to bring a new, unwrapped toy. Those who wish may also donate to the Sheriff’s Empty Stocking Fund. The proceeds from the Sheriff’s Empty Stocking fund go directly to benefit underprivileged children in Towns County, children who might not receive Christmas gifts otherwise.

Last year, thanks to all those who donated, we were able to provide gifts for hundreds of Towns County Children. This year we hope to continue to meet those needs for children who otherwise would not receive Christmas gifts, but we will need your help and continued support. We have already begun to receive donations for the children, and I would like to thank those who have joined us to help in this effort. Each year since 2007, I have had the honor to be a part of something that brings joy to the hearts of those who give, as well as to the children who receive. I am thankful to serve such a caring community.

This year we are again asking those who will, to continue their support of the Sheriff’s Empty Stocking fund. The program is designed in such a manner as to allow the parents to pick up the gifts, or if unable to pick them up due to transportation issues, we will deliver the gifts to the parents. The idea behind the program is to allow the parents to be the ones who give the gifts to their children. It is a wonderful program that brings joy to the hearts of many young children each year. I would like to take this opportunity to say a personal thank you to the entire Sheriff’s Office staff and our CLEA volunteers for working so hard each year to ensure that local children and families have a merry Christmas!

If you are interested in helping by participating in the parade, simply call the Sheriff’s Office at 706/896-4444. You may also drop off donations at the Sheriff’s Office Detention Center located at 4070 State Highway 339, Young Harris, or the Towns County Sheriff’s Office located in the Towns County Courthouse at 48 River Street, Hiawassee.

Thank you for your continued support of this wonderful program. We look forward to another successful year of helping Towns County’s children in need, made possible by your generosity this Christmas season.

From the Desk of the Sheriff

Sheriff's Desk
Sheriff Chris Clinton Towns County GA

From the Desk of Sheriff Chris Clinton:

Most of us have family traditions that we enjoy during the Christmas season. Families with small children may spend Christmas Eve baking cookies for Santa or listening to Christmas carols while enjoying eggnog by the fire. As a small child, I remember the anticipation of Christmas being so intense. I was in awe and wonder, dreaming about what might be inside all those presents wrapped so nicely under the tree. I would just stare at the Christmas tree and daydream about Christmas Day.

For me, even at 49, Christmas is still the most magical time of year. I love Christmas lights and the sounds of Christmas carols everywhere. The world just seems to be a nicer place during the Christmas season. I love to watch young children open gifts and see their eyes light up with joy. There is no other feeling like the feeling of Christmas. While Christmas is about much more than material possessions, the spirit of Christmas is certainly captured in the joy of a child receiving a gift on Christmas morning.

So, what about the children who are less fortunate? Imagine the child whose family has fallen on hard times. Do they wake up to just another day of struggling to make ends meet? Imagine if you were a parent who loved your child, but had lost a job because of the poor economy. I doubt that there would be anything much harder than not being able to provide your child, whom you love, the wonder of Christmas morning. It breaks my heart to think that, as the rest of the world enjoys the most blessed day of the year, some families wake to another day of not having enough. While providing toys for these children isn’t going to make the rest of their problems go away, I can’t help but believe that, at least for a time, their world becomes a little brighter and things seem a little better than before.

Each year the Sheriff’s Office attempts to provide the joy of Christmas gifts for Towns County’s less fortunate children. This effort is only made possible by the help of generous people in the community who donate to this cause. Names of children in need are collected and toys are gathered. We try whenever possible to provide at least one item that the child has specifically asked for. The toys are then given to the parents of the child to handle Christmas in their family’s tradition. It is all done in such a way as to protect the dignity of the family and allow them to share in the joy that many of us take for granted.

This year has been a tough one for many local families. We are hoping to provide for each child, but we need your help. If you would like to help us with this effort or if you know of a family with children that needs help, please contact your Sheriff’s Office at 706-896-4444.

I hope that each of you has a blessed and joyous Christmas this year!

Sheriff Weighs in on Confederate History

News
Sheriff Chris Clinton

Hiawassee, GA – The hot topics of Confederate monuments reached a local level on Friday, September 15, during the Movers and Shakers weekly meeting at Sundance Grill.

Sam Fullerton, a co-founder of the community discussion group, invited Sheriff Chris Clinton to address the crowd before the forum adjourned.

Although it was a impromptu request, Sheriff Clinton took the podium and began to tell the sentimental story of how his grandparents met and married in Towns County after World War II. The tale formed the foundation for what was to follow:

The sheriff’s views on the eradication of history.

Sheriff Clinton didn’t mince words and spoke with passion about his beliefs.

“Monuments are being torn down. Books are being burned. We cannot destroy history,” the sheriff said, “There’s a vacuum in the media and the pulpits. The only way we can move forward and heal this nation is by teaching our children the truth about about the past.”

“Many people don’t realize that George Washington wasn’t our first President because it isn’t taught in schools. George Washington was actually our ninth President. There were eight before him under the Articles of Confederation.

Sheriff Clinton went on to say that while slavery was a “horrible thing” and acknowledged the role it played, he explained the Civil War was fought by Confederate citizens in defense of state sovereignty , in opposition of Union taxation.

“That’s the part the media fails to mention,” the Sheriff said, “Robert E. Lee, he hated slavery. Abraham Lincoln was originally willing to keep the Union intact by either preservation or abolishment of slavery. How can we teach our children, our children’s children, if we erase history?”

“I believe I’m responsible for telling the truth,” Sheriff Clinton concluded, “What’s done with it isn’t up to me.”

Fetch Your News reached out to the Towns County Democratic Party for their general take on the controversial issue.

Although a reply as to whether the comment was “on record” wasn’t returned, a member of the Party, who identifies as a Progressive, wrote in an email, “History is important to remember. But when it offends an entire group like Jews, ethnic minority tribes in Asia, and maybe African Americans, a non-combative conversation should take place by officials in charge with input from the community.”

Due to in explicit permission to publish the quotee’s name, Fetch Your News respects the privacy of the individual.

Sheriff Clinton Explains Child Passenger Safety Laws

Sheriff's Desk
Sheriff Chris Clinton Towns County GA

From the Desk of Sheriff Chris Clinton:

Child passenger safety is an important topic. No one wants their child to be injured in a motor vehicle accident. Not only will improper precautions place a child in harm, but drivers can receive a citation for failing to follow state laws regarding child passenger safety. The following information is a paraphrase of the requirements of the law in Georgia.

Children under age eight are required to be in a child safety seat or booster seat. The seat or booster must be appropriate for the child’s height and weight and must be used according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Generally, children under eight must ride in a back seat, but there are a few exceptions to that requirement.

If a vehicle has no rear seating or all the rear seats are already occupied by other children, a child under eight may ride in the front seat. Still, any child riding in a front seat must be properly restrained in a child safety seat or booster seat appropriate for their height and weight. Drivers should be aware of the potential of the child receiving serious injury should an airbag deployment occur while a child is riding in the front seat.

When using a booster seat, a lap/shoulder belt is required, but again, there is an exception. A child over 40 pounds may use only a lap belt if the vehicle does not have shoulder belts or if positions that have lap/shoulder belts are being used to restrain other children. If there are only lap belts in the rear seat, a child may ride in the front seat. Again, any child riding in the front seat must be restrained in a safety seat that is appropriate for their height and weight. The seat must be used according to the manufacturer’s instructions. There remains the potential for serious injury from an airbag deployment that should be understood and considered.

A child over 4’9″ in height may be restrained in a safety belt instead of a booster seat. A child under eight can be exempt for physical or medical reasons only if the parent or guardian has a written statement from a physician that a physical or medical condition prevents using a child safety seat or safety restraint system.

As always, it is our desire to help you and your loved ones remain safe. If you have questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to call on your Sheriff’s Office at 706-896-4444. We are always honored to assist you in keeping yourself and your family safe.

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. – FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. – For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

 

 

 

Sheriff Clinton shares Christmas shopping safety tips

Sheriff's Desk
Sheriff Chris Clinton

From the Desk of Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton:

During the holiday season, busy people intent on trying to complete their Christmas shopping often become the target of criminals who seek to steal packages from vehicles parked in mall and shopping center parking lots. The following information is provided in conjunction with your Georgia Sheriffs’ Association and is intended to help you from becoming the next victim.

When shopping, look for the best lit parking spaces. Once in your chosen space, look around before leaving your car. Is there anyone in the vicinity watching you? Do you see anyone loitering? If so, remain in your car and watch them for a moment. If they move on, that’s fine, but if not, you might consider moving to a new parking space. If you feel uncertain or unsafe about a situation you observe, take steps to move yourself to a safer location. Don’t assume you are being foolish or paranoid.

Once you are in a safer location, lock your vehicle and move quickly and confidently to the store. Would-be thieves and robbers are looking for the easiest targets. If you show that you are aware of what is happening around you and move with a sense of purpose, you are less likely to become a victim. Walk against the flow and traffic.

Keep your head up and scanning—look forward, to the right and left, and even check behind as you walk. Awareness is your greatest defense. Don’t search through a purse or bags in the parking lot. If you must look for something, make sure you are in the safety of the store before you become absorbed in your hunt for a tissue, shopping list or other item.

If you store items in your vehicle, make sure they are covered or concealed. If you are putting bags in your vehicle and returning to shop, move your car from time to time in case someone is watching you.

Finally, if leaving late from a shopping mall or store, don’t hesitate to ask a store employee for help. Don’t accept the kind offer of the “stranger” who meets you outside the door and offers assistance. It may be a kind and generous offer, but it could also be ploy to gain access to your belongings.

Be aware, stay safe, and have a joyous and wonderful holiday season!

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. – FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. – For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

 

 

Sheriff Clinton offers tips to avoid Holiday fraud

Sheriff's Desk
Sheriff Chris Clinton Towns County GA

From the Desk of Sheriff Christopher M. Clinton

Towns County, Ga.

 

This week, as we celebrate Thanksgiving, most of us will enjoy the time with family and friends or take part in some tradition. Many are already planning their Christmas shopping. While stores and consumers alike are getting ready for a busy season of shopping, criminals are planning to take advantage of unwary consumers.

Each year criminals and unscrupulous companies, many of them outside the United States, take advantage of consumers through the use of Internet fraud. In an effort to keep you safe we offer for your consideration the following guidelines suggested by the FBI to help you avoid becoming a victim:

• Only purchase merchandise from reputable dealers or establishments.

• Try to obtain a physical address rather than merely a post office box and a phone number; call the seller to see if the number is correct and working.

• Send them an e-mail to see if they have an active e-mail address and be wary of those that utilize free e-mail services where a credit card wasn’t required to open the account.

• Consider not purchasing from sellers who won’t provide you with this type of information.

• Purchase merchandise directly from the individual/company that holds the trademark, copyright, or patent.

• Beware when responding to e-mail that may not have been sent by a reputable company.

• Guard your account information carefully. Don’t give out your credit card number(s) online unless the site is a secure and reputable site. Sometimes a tiny icon of a padlock appears to symbolize a higher level of security to transmit data. This icon is not a guarantee of a secure site, but might provide you some assurance.

We at the Towns County Sheriff’s Office are thankful for the opportunity to serve our citizens. As we all pause to give thanks this year, consider helping a child less fortunate by becoming a partner in the Sheriff’s Empty Stocking Fund. This annual project provides Christmas toys for Towns County children who otherwise would not receive gifts due to financial hardships.

Each year we hold the Sheriff’s Christmas Parade to benefit the Sheriff’s Empty Stocking Fund. Participants are asked to bring a new unwrapped toy for a boy or girl. The parade this year will be held Nov. 25, 2017, and will start at 5:30 p.m. The parade will travel from the Georgia Mountain Fair to McConnell Memorial Baptist Church in Hiawassee. Participants are encouraged to be at the fairgrounds at 4 p.m. for parade line up.

If you would like to help a child in need by donating toys or making a financial contribution, you may do so at either the Towns County Sheriff’s Office Detention Center and Administrative Offices, located at 4070 State Hwy 339, Young Harris, GA or at the Towns County Sheriff’s Office located in the Towns County Courthouse, at 48 River Street, Hiawassee, GA.

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. – FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. – For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

 

 

Love for the Lord and the Law of the Land

Business
Sheriff Chris Clinton

Hiawassee, GA – Which words come to mind when asked to describe law enforcement? Narration of the enforcement of law? The preservation of peace? A balance of both?

In this day and age, the odds are stacked against “God” and “Love” making it to the top of the majority’s vocabulary list, yet that was the message bestowed upon graduates of the Citizen Law Enforcement Academy (CLEA), a 20-hour course sponsored by the Towns County Sheriff’s Office.

Pastor Steve Taylor of McConnell Baptist Church was the keynote speaker at the ceremony for the seventh edition class which took place on October 3, 2017, in the sanctuary of the majestic church on Main Street.

CLEA VII with Sheriff Chris Clinton and Pastor Steve Taylor

Dozens of graduates and guests gathered in the pews, seated in solemn silence, as Pastor Steve made mention of the Las Vegas tragedy that occurred mere days before, and his gratitude toward those willing to serve in support of peace officers.

The Pastor said he “understands why a program like [CLEA] is necessary. Law enforcement cannot do it alone.” Pastor Steve iterated the shared sentiments of Sheriff Chris Clinton, who listened among his supporters and staff, nodding in agreement throughout the lesson.

The solution to the strife returns to a wise Scripture, according to the Pastor’s teaching: Luke 10:27, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind. And love your neighbor as yourself.”

“Love God. All we do flows from there. And love people,” Pastor Steve Taylor emoted, “We see, but don’t say. We say, but don’t do…There’s confusion in society about what love is. We have to choose to love. Love is conduct, action. Not to get, but to give.”

Pastor Steve imparted his closing thoughts for the Sheriff, his staff, CLEA alumni, and graduates to ponder, “Do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly.”

The keynotes were followed by a digital presentation of the 10-week journey the graduates traveled in order to arrive with certificates in hand, followed by kind words of appreciation from Sheriff Clinton.

Sheriff Chris Clinton

Towns County Sheriff Chris Clinton presents certificates to CLEA graduates. Pictured: Colonel Terry Conner and Pastor Steve Taylor

When asked, CLEA alumni David Marrella shared his thoughts on his dedicated public service. He answered with earnest, “It’s a way to give back. The Sheriff’s Office has always taken care of us. I want to give back to them.”

CLEA VII graduate, Richard Parkman, agreed with Mr. Marrella’s response. “I see it as an opportunity to become involved. I support [Sheriff] Chris [Clinton] and law enforcement. This is a people-oriented community.”

It was an event those in attendance are unlikely to forget.

 

Featured Image: (L-R)

CLEA alumni David Marrella, Pastor Steve Taylor, Sheriff Chris Clinton

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that attracts more than 300,000 page views and 3.5 million impressions per month in Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYNTV attracts approximately 15,000 viewers per week and reaches between 15,000 to 60,000 per week on our Facebook page. For the most effective, least expensive local advertising, call 706-276-6397 or email us at advertise@FetchYourNews.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sheriff’s Desk: Multimillion Dollar Methamphetamine Operation Results in Arrests

News, Sheriff's Desk
Sheriff Chris Clinton Towns County GA

From the Desk of Sheriff Chris Clinton

Towns County, Georgia

 

I have long believed that one of the secrets to success in criminal investigations is networking and sharing information with other law enforcement agencies.

In 2007, after being elected Sheriff of Towns County, I became a member of the Appalachian Drug Task Force. At that time we had four sheriff’s offices in the task force.

In 2012, the other board members saw fit to ask me to serve as Vice Chairman of the Board. Around that same time, one of the four sheriffs decided to pull out of the task force, leaving only three sheriffs involved. Many tried to pressure me to pull out of the “drug task force” calling it a waste of time. I did not believe this to be true and still do not.

After our board members voted to become a regional drug enforcement office serving North Georgia the name was changed to the Appalachian Regional Drug Enforcement Office (ARDEO). By this time, Banks County Sheriff’s Office had joined us and we were back to four. As it stands today, we have grown to include Towns County Sheriff’s Office, White County Sheriff’s Office, Lumpkin County Sheriff’s Office, Banks County Sheriff’s Office, Habersham County Sheriff’s Office, Stephens County Sheriff’s Office, Rabun County Sheriff’s Office and Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, along with the Cleveland Police Department, Lavonia Police Department, the Georgia National Guard Counter Drug Task Force, the Department of Public Safety, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

That is a lot of agencies, sharing a lot of criminal intelligence. But, has it been effective?

By 2016, the ARDEO had made seizures of more than $36,000,000.00. ARDEO is one of three Regional Drug Enforcement Offices in the State of Georgia. The other two are the West Metro (Atlanta area) and Savannah, Chatham County. As large as those areas are, the ARDEO has kept pace and, in some areas, surpassed the standard set by the other two.

This past weekend was no exception. The following information was provided originally by Georgia Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge Mitchell Posey, who supervises our drug agents. On Friday, September 15th, 2017, the Appalachian Regional Drug Enforcement Office and the FBI’s North Georgia Major Offender Squad disrupted a methamphetamine trafficking ring in North Georgia.

A traffic stop of Angel Luis Rivera- Santiago and Victor Rafael Aponte yielded the seizure of 15 kilograms of methamphetamine. During the subsequent investigation, Lumpkin County Sheriff’s Office and FBI Agents executed a search warrant at 990 Flanders Road, Dahlonega, GA. Valentine Duarte-Vejar ran from this residence, but was captured in the possession of a handgun. This search warrant yielded a few grams of cocaine and $166,000. Agents continued to follow investigative leads until a conversion lab was located at 843 Cooper’s Creek Road, Suches, Union County, GA. A conversion lab is used to convert liquid methamphetamine to its crystal form.

Agents located a handgun and 15 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine at the lab. ARDEO Agents processed approximately 300 pounds of environmental waste largely containing methamphetamine oil. Agents on scene estimated this lab was capable of producing a minimum of 25-50 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine at a time. This short but effective investigation was a federal, state, and local partnership that disrupted and dismantled a drug distribution network’s attempt to flood our communities with this destructive drug for their own financial gain. The street value of the 30 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine is $3,234,000.

Angel Luis Rivera- Santiago, 42, of Norcross, Victor Rafael Aponte, 30, of Dahlonega and Valentine Duarte-Vejar, 25, of Dahlonega were charged with trafficking methamphetamine. Eleoncio Perez-Pineda, 29, of Dahlonega, and Jose Mario Duarte-Vejar, 25, of Dahlonega were later arrested in Dahlonega and charged with conspiracy to manufactory methamphetamine. These five men were transported to the Lumpkin County Detention Center. The immigration status of these men is still pending. This investigation continues.

Valentine Duarte-Vejar ran from this residence, but was captured in the possession of a handgun. This search warrant yielded a few grams of cocaine and $166,000. Agents continued to follow investigative leads until a conversion lab was located at 843 Cooper’s Creek Road, Suches, Union County, GA. A conversion lab is used to convert liquid methamphetamine to its crystal form. Agents located a handgun and 15 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine at the lab. ARDEO Agents processed approximately 300 pounds of environmental waste largely containing methamphetamine oil. Agents on scene estimated this lab was capable of producing a minimum of 25-50 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine at a time. This short but effective investigation was a federal, state, and local partnership that disrupted and dismantled a drug distribution network’s attempt to flood our communities with this destructive drug for their own financial gain. The street value of the 30 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine is $3,234,000

None of this would have been possible without the combined efforts and partnerships developed. I think we are on the right track in keeping our community safe from the dangerous criminals and the poison they pedal.

If you have information regarding criminal behavior, please do not hesitate to contact your sheriff’s office at 706-896-4444 or in an emergency dial 911.

 

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