Being retired, I still speak with quite a few of the people that I used to be professionally associated with. I was speaking with a Deputy Sheriff who was telling me a story that I cannot believe.
First, let me set the stage: There is a neighborhood in Osceola County Florida called Buenaventura Lakes. Locals refer to it as BVL. The BVL community continues into Orange County, but whichever side of the county line you are on, BVL is a high crime area where the majority of citizens don’t speak English as a primary language, murders and other violent crimes are common, and the reality police shows have filmed more than one episode. Gangs are prevalent, and you don’t want to be caught in this area after dark. The western edge of this area was my primary response area for eight years. I saw more than a few serious crimes in that area.
Early one recent morning, the Osceola County Sheriff’s department was responding to the report of a dead body in the road in the vicinity of BVL boulevard and Osceola Parkway. After a thirty minute search, they located the body in the middle of the road, but the body was located a half mile north of the Orange County line, where BVL Boulevard becomes Landstar Blvd. This means that the body was clearly outside of the jurisdiction of the Osceola deputies. The man had been killed elsewhere, and then dumped from a moving vehicle into the road. The deputies decided to secure the crime scene, call the Orange county Sheriff’s department, and wait to turn it over to them, so that the Orange deputies could work the scene.
They were told that the Sheriff’s office doesn’t work dead bodies in the road, because this was likely a pedestrian accident, and that the deputies should call the Florida Highway Patrol. The Orange sheriff’s office said they didn’t have the manpower. Calls the SO also doesn’t respond to, due to lack of manpower: Reports of shots fired, suspicious persons, auto accidents, noise complaints, and other “non serious calls.”
Orange county Sheriff’s office is the department that wouldn’t investigate when checks were being stolen from my mailbox and being deposited in the thief’s bank account, and they cited manpower issues. It appears as though those issues have not subsided.
Except that I drove six miles to work yesterday, and I saw no less than six motorists get pulled over for traffic offenses. The Orange County sheriff’s office doesn’t have the manpower to respond to a dead body in the middle of the road, but they can sure as hell write you a $254 ticket for running a red light.