New Jeff Davis Sheriff gets to work on first day

Sheriff Ivy Woods

Jeff Davis Parish is set for several changes according to new Sheriff Ivy Woods. He tackled his first official work day in office today.

The first goal of Sheriff Woods is to address the unsolved crimes in Jeff Davis Parish. That includes the Jeff Davis eight, and that's where Sheriff Woods plans to begin.

It may have been his first day on the job, but he didn't take it easy.

"The first thing I did, I got with my chief investigator Chris Ivey, and we went over a few things that we wanted to implement to our detectives," said Woods.

His focus? The eight unsolved murders that drew national attention. He contacted the task force lead investigator and the evidence department, to make sure he was up to date on the details of the homicides. He plans to meet with each woman's family one-on-one.

"I just want to reach out and let them know that we care about what's going on and make sure they know the investigation is still going on," said Woods.

And then there's Welsh, a town of just over three thousand people, but with a high crime rate.

"One of the things I want to do is keep a good repour with the mayors of all our cities, especially Welsh now that they've had some unsolved murders and an unsolved arson, and get with the chief and offer some assistance to their department," said Woods.

Resident can expect even more changes though.

"We're going to establish two full time deputies for narcotics enforcement," said Woods.

Sheriff Woods says many crimes stem from illegal drug use, and he hopes the new enforcement will help. He says along with these positions will eventually come car and uniform changes, but he has some learning to do before then.

"I want to get familiar with the budget, number one thing, before we create more positions in our force," said Woods."

Sheriff Woods shares one message to the residents of Jeff Davis Parish.

"We want to make you feel safe in the parish," said Woods. "Go anywhere in the parish, walk down any street at any time, you have no concerns to worry about."
While speaking with Sheriff Woods, he mentioned another severe problem in Jeff Davis Parish: copper wire theft. In fact he said last Monday, thieves struck the McNeese meat processing center, stripping the facility of exterior copper, something else Sheriff Woods plans to tackle as soon as he can.

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