TULARE, Calif. (KFSN) --The Tulare County Sheriff's Office needs more space for the evidence and property they have stored for so many years. They will also need it for what they will collect in the years to come. Currently, it is housed near the pre-trial facility, north of Visalia.
"So our facilities were meeting those demands," said Tulare County Sheriff Mike Boudreaux. "However, we have quickly over the course of time outgrown our current facility and the facility is old. So we're looking to the next 50 years."
Boudreaux says the new property and evidence facility is just one of many sheriff's infrastructure improvement projects.
The current facilities aren't out of compliance, but could be in the future. So the goal for the sheriff is to not only be ahead of the curve, but be state-of-the-art as well.
Tulare County supervisors recently approved allocating $3 million towards a 6,000 square-foot building to house that property and evidence. It will be located in Tulare, next to the coroner's office and behind an existing county owned building that is currently being retrofitted for a crime lab.
Cybercrimes and coroner's employees will also work in the building, which used to be a school.
Supervisor Phil Cox says all that's left to do there are the finishing touches, like installing cubicles and computers. He said construction on the new building should start before the end of the year.
"So it was kind of a match made in heaven," Cox said. "You have an existing office building that will work for the deputies, the sheriff's that work in here, and then there's plenty of land to build."
Between the added space and the upgraded technology, both facilities will benefit sheriff's employees and how they do their jobs. But the sheriff said these facilities are also about the people of Tulare County, specifically victims of crime.
"The importance of making sure that we collect the finest of evidence, surgically collected for the preservation of bringing those cases to court, truly is the future of what we need to do in law enforcement," Boudreaux said.