Jones begins fourth term with good news

Published 12:00 am Thursday, July 3, 2008


Editor and Publisher

LAPLACE – St. John Sheriff Wayne Jones had to be in a great mood on Tuesday afternoon in front of the Percy C. Hebert Building, as he was inaugurated into office for his fourth term.

But at the end of his speech to the large crowd, including all his law enforcement force, Jones was not the only one smiling.

The St. John sheriff announced to the public that all of his officers will be receiving a 5 percent pay increase, as the St. John Sheriff’s Office will immediately begin paying 5 percent of the contribution into the pension system for all officers.

Jones followed his inauguration by Judge Tom Daley with a speech to the public that promised a renewed commitment, as Jones heads into his newest term at the helm of the St. John law enforcement department.

“As long as I’m sheriff, there will be no complacency,” he told the crowd. “You have honored me with your vote and I promise to always do my best, to be fair and understanding, and that is for all the people, no matter what your race or level of wealth is.”

Jones won his fourth term in office by a landslide, having only one opponent, and garnering well over 60 percent of the vote to take the victory last fall.

He thanked his department for their continued hard work, and noted that his staff has “never had any kind of scandal” since he had been in office.

“I have a steadfast desire to do my best, since this is my home too,” he said. “I grew up here and my family lives here. The only thing that is different for me this term is that now my wife and I are grandparents.”

Jones was introduced by St. John Coroner Dr. Christy Montegut, a longtime personal friend, who said the sheriff is someone the people can count on for his dedication to the job.

“He cares about this community,” Montegut said. “And you won’t find anyone who works harder or tries to cooperate more with the other agencies here.”

Not only did Jones announce the raise for his entire force, which will cost the Sheriff’s Office $800,000 a year, but he also told the public about another crime prevention move the St. John department would be instituting soon.

“We will be moving into a new area of technology very soon as you will begin to see crime cameras posted at key areas around the parish,” he said. “I want St. John to be as safe as it can be for our citizens, which will take cooperation between all the law enforcement agencies. I want to begin meeting more often with other leaders in the parish so we don’t have any of these career criminals fall through the cracks.”

Natalie Robottom, former St. John chief administrative officer who is now a department head for Governor Bobby Jindal, was on hand to give Jones a certificate of commendation from Jindal for his work as the St. John sheriff.