Fresno Sheriff's Assistance Fees

September 1, 2009 9:28:10 AM PDT
When police departments in many Fresno County towns need help to solve a crime, they often look to the sheriff's office. But starting Monday, that help will come with a hefty price-tag.The memo went out internally, letting staff members know that crimes once investigated without cost will now come with a fee. Agencies often reach out to the sheriff's office for their expertise in certain areas. Now, they will be billed for the help.

It used to be if another smaller Fresno County city needed help from the sheriff's office, the department would absorb the cost. With the budget millions short, the good old days are gone so to speak.

Fresno County Undersheriff Scott Jones said, "You know you always hear do more with less. We've been down to the point now where we're going to do less with less.

Analyzing crime scene evidence will now come at a cost for other law enforcement agencies. Undersheriff Scott Jones says agencies will also be charged for any detectives asked to assist with another investigation.

The sheriff's office would not expect reimbursement for homicides and officer involved shootings when a person is hit by gunfire.

"They have a decision to make on the level of the investigation, the sophistication of the investigation," said Undersheriff Jones.

Jones says all police chiefs of incorporated cities have been notified and are understanding of the current situation.

The cost will be actual costs of the personnel with no additional fees added.

The sheriff's office will still lend their Eagle One helicopter if it's available. The same goes for the K9 unit and dive team.

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