Clifton Lions host Sheriff Trace Hendricks, Talk Leos Club Banquet

The Clifton Lions Club met today (Thursday, January 13), and delivered some community annoucements before inviting Sheriff (and Lion) Trace Hendricks to speak. 

Kenneth Mills delivered announcements and updates to the club.

The district recently raised $5,000 for the Texas Lions Camp that benefits children with disabilities and their families. The Clifton Club contributed $1,000, with lions Richard Bergman and Renee Kettler taking the polar plunge in Kosse, Texas. The Leos Club at High School is chartered. A banquet will be held for the Leos Club at a later date.

Pictured left to right are Lions Rodney Rueter, Renee Kettler, James Powell, and Kenneth Mills. The group received pins as an award for membership increases with the club. Jason New was also honored, though he was not present.

"We all brought at least one new member in. We have seven new members since July and a total of 56 members in the Lions Club."

Lion Secretary Renee Kettler, speaking of the membership awards Tweet

Guest Speaker

Savannah Lea introduced the speaker, Bosque County Sheriff Trace Hendricks.

Lion Trace Hendricks took the podium after being introduced by Savannah Lea. After being sworn in January 1, 2021, at midnight, he toured the jail with Chief Deputy Larry Betik. They found that a lock was not in compliance with fire standards, as well as other issues we previously interview Hendricks about on our News Blast Podcast in January of 2021.  

He noted that main highways need to be patrolled, but neighborhoods and county roads are important too.

“I’d heard that many of those living out in the country never see a deputy, so I wanted to change that."

Bosque County Sheriff Trace Hendricks, speaking of revamping patrol efforts in a different direction upon coming into office Tweet

Security checks for churches while they’re in service are commonly completed now. Clifton, Meridian, and Valley Mills have police department, so Hendricks tries to focus on smaller communities that don’t have a strong law enforcement presence.

He moved on to speak of changing roles within the department. He promoted Sarah Hadley to investigator, to deal with crimes against children.

“She’s a hero. She handles that work compassionately. She gets involved in it, and strives to get results.”

Hendricks, speaking of Hadley Tweet

Hendricks Received a call from an Federal Bureau of Investigation agent recently. The agent congratulated the Bosque County and Hill County sheriff’s offices, and surrounding departments for their work in the safe return of Cody and Jessi Lowery. The Waco branch of the FBI was also involved in the recovery of the children.

He moved on to the topic of reopening cold cases, highlighting missing person John Richard Creech. Informants say that he was murdered and his remains were disposed of in Lake Whitney. Hendricks said that there are six vehicles underwater that the sheriff’s office is looking at. A dive team called Adventures With Purpose is coming from Oregon is coming this week to search the vehicles and lake. To date, they’re covered 25-30 missing persons across the nation. They inflate airbags to raise vehicles, and then tow them to shore.

Bosque County was established April 26 as a second amendment sanctuary county.

The bulletproof vest replacement campaign was successful. Most vests that were being used were older than seven years old. 

Jail Updates

Some years ago, the majority of inmates were housed in other counties. Previously, the county was paying over half a million dollars in housing costs during that time. When citizens voted for the new jail, they were promised inmate housing to increase revenue and cover previous costs. A total of $322,235 was garnered from inmate housing over last over the last year. The cost of housing was just raised to $65.

“I want to stay in the game, and next year I think the number will be over $400,000.”

By entering a food provider contract with Performance Food Group, the sheriff’s office has saved 8% on the food bill. The electric bill is the same for one inmate versus 64. The water bill increases based on inmate numbers.

“I want to stay in the game, and next year I think the number will be over $400,000.”

Hendricks, speaking of inmate housing revenue Tweet

The sheriff’s office entered a food provider contract with Performance Food Group, and by doing som saved 8% on the food bill. The electric bill is the same for one inmate versus 64. The water bill increases based on inmate numbers.

“Eyes and ears on the ground.”

said Hendricks, answering the question of what citizens can better do to assist the Bosque County Sheriff’s Office. Tweet

The total jail budget is right at $1 million. Hendricks said that he is working on a town hall meeting for a year in review.

When asked, he said that number one crime type in Bosque County is always drug-related.

“Strong enforcement of drug law leads to a drop in other crimes. Most cases involve drugs in some fashion. Highway 6 is trafficked.”

Hendricks, speaking of drug enforcement, and both human and drug trafficking Tweet

He noted that one jailor has become a deputy recently, as he complete police academy and just began the training phase on the job, with about five months left to complete. On that, the Lions’ curiosity was satiated, and the meeting adjourned, with a big thank you from members to the sheriff. 

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