Taking to the skies

By: Emi FitzGerald Email
By: Emi FitzGerald Email

SHERMAN, Tex.--Some area agencies are trying to add another dimension to Texoma law enforcement. Grayson County sheriff Keith Gary gave a proposal to the County Commissioners Monday, asking them to consider a Texoma Air Unit.

Gary says during the June floods authorities had to wait until a helicopter could arrive from Garland to assist in rescue efforts. He says with a regional air unit, the response time would be a lot quicker.

About one year ago, Bryan County received an army surplus helicopter. That aircraft, along with two fixed wing airplanes would be a part of the unit. Currently he Grayson and Bryan county sheriff's offices are involved as well as the Durant and Sherman police departments.

Gary says the aerial vantage point would help them find drug fields normally hidden. The airplanes could help transport inmates quickly, and in the case of severe flooding or emergencies, help save lives.

"In this case we could have up in a matter of minutes and maybe save someone who is stranded in a tree or stranded on top of a car,” Gary says. “It's going to give us a lot of opportunities to do things we haven't been able to do."

The program would cost the county around $5,000 a year, but they would take that from drug seizure funds. The program would not require money from the county budget.

This is still in the preliminary stage; no word yet on if and when it could be approved.

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