Leaders in Rowan County are proposing Rowan County Sheriff Kevin Auten be allowed to take over the Salisbury Police Department to help curb gun violence in the community, according to the Salisbury Post.
County Commissioner Craig Pierce and City Councilman Kenny Hardin made the proposal, suggesting the change would only be temporary. Pierce believes the move would allow county government do more to help with crime in the city limits, reported the Post. Councilman Hardin was quoted as saying it is time to take “extreme measures.”
“Salisbury needs some help, and we’re more than willing to put up the resources,” Pierce was quoted as saying in the Post. “I’m not after pointing fingers and saying, ‘Y’all can’t handle it. Let us come handle it.’ But we’ve got to do something other than what we’re doing.”
The idea is being suggested after a series of high profile gun incidents in Salisbury, including the murder of 7-year-old A’yanna Allen, who shot and killed.
The Salisbury Police Department faces a significant shortage of officers, while Rowan County Sheriff’s Office has an almost full staff, the Post reported.