Parish sheriff makes changes at office, jail
Published 3:40 am Wednesday, March 25, 2020
This article was submitted by Washington Parish Sheriff Randy Seal.
The Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office (WPSO) is doing all that we can to help keep out parish safe and healthy. Public safety is our No. 1 priority, and we pledge to do our part to help contain the spread of the coronavirus and protect those persons most at risk.
As you know, Gov. John Bel Edwards issued a proclamation on March 22 limiting public activity until at least April 12. In compliance with this proclamation, and in keeping with common sense precautions designed to protect everyone, WPSO has initiated the following procedures effective immediately and lasting until April 12. If necessary in the interest of public health, that deadline will be adjusted.
- WPSO deputies will continue to patrol the parish as usual. Likewise, our detectives will continue to investigate criminal activity. Those persons who engage in criminal activities will be dealt with in accordance with Louisiana law.
- Persons who wish to file a complaint regarding criminal activity should call 985-839-3434 to speak with the operator on duty. A deputy will return your call and the complaint will be taken over the telephone. Walk-in complaints will not be accepted during this critical time. If your situation is an emergency, call 911 and it will be handled immediately.
- WPSO offices will be closed to the public at least until April 12. If you need to talk with an office employee, call 985-839-3434 during regular business hours and the operator will connect you.
- If you need a copy of a record, call 985-839-3434 during weekday business hours and the operator will direct your call to the appropriate employee who will handle your request.
- You may pay traffic fines online by following the link at www.wpsotix.com. You can also view ticket and court fine information at this link.
- You may pay sales tax online at secure.salestaxonline.com/default_sto.aspx.
- You may pay property tax online at www.wpso.la.gov.
The Washington Parish Jail will continue to operate as usual. Proper precautions are being taken to help safeguard the health of the jail staff and inmates. All medical decisions are coordinated by the jail physician and jail RN. All security decisions are coordinated by the warden.
- All inmate medical trips for routine matters are postponed until the coronavirus issue has passed. Only emergency medical trips will be made at the discretion of the medical staff.
- Transportation of inmates to/from other facilities is curtailed until further notice.
- Courts have ceased activity during this crisis; therefore, no inmates will be transported for court proceedings.
- Bonds will be set as usual by the Magistrate Judge. Any person who wants to post bond for an inmate should call 985-839-3434 to be connected to the jail staff for procedural information.
- Inmate visitation has been cancelled until further notice. Inmates will be allowed one free telephone call per week, in lieu of visitation. Family members and friends can communicate with inmates by writing to the inmate at P.O. Box 569, Franklinton, LA 70438.
- All persons who enter the jail will undergo screening in the form of a questionnaire and temperature check before being allowed into the jail. Attorney visitation with inmates is discouraged except in emergency situations. Any attorney visit will occur through security glass and on a non-recorded line.
As your sheriff, I pledge the resources of the Sheriff’s Office to serve the citizens of Washington Parish. As we work together to keep Washington Parish safe, I ask for the patience and cooperation of all persons.
We will do all we can to continue to serve you in a professional manner and I ask you to do all you can to serve your family and friends. As we work together for a common goal, we will emerge a stronger parish. I ask God’s richest blessings and protection for each person during this critical time in our lives.