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SRSD are launching their 'Before Shots are Fired' Campaign today.

"At the end of the day we do not want to shoot anyone. Firing shots at civilians during some of the highly charged incidents we have to attended is not something the Sheriff's ever takes lightly, or something we ever want to do unless its necessary for the protection of members of the public or our personnel." said Undersheriff Brentt of SRSD. "However a large proportion of the time, when we arrive its already to late to avoid that outcome, things have escalated to far and gone beyond the point where other options may be available to us. The purpose of this campaign run in conjunction with the Mayor's office is to make the public aware, that often picking up the phone and dialing 911 at the very beginning of disagreements or situations can, quite bluntly, save lives."

"Whilst that might seem obvious there have been a lot of incidences that could of had very different endings, had someone called us earlier." he added "The Sheriff's Department is not and never will advocate that any member of the public puts themselves in more danger in order to contact us. We understand it is not always going to a viable option, but what we are asking is that if you have a disagreement with someone, someone has said something that makes you feel threatened, intruded into your home or business, done something to you or someone you know that is offensive, or is behaving in way that is suspicious or threatening, pick up the phone then at the earliest opportunity and give us a call, our personnel are trained to mediate and deescalate situations. That is something which we will be continuing to train for in the coming months. No, not every call to us is going to result in an arrest and not every single person is going to walk away happy with the outcome, but the point is that everyone 'can' walk away. What we do not want to see is more incidences like the shoot out at the casino a few months ago, that was a result of people taking grievances into their own hands. Situations like that can escalate very rapidly with lethal consequences and all evidences suggests had certain parties have brought their concerns and grievances to us much earlier or even called us at the first concern of trouble the whole thing could of been avoided."

"That is the long and short of it. We are here and sworn to protect and serve this community, whatever that may involve and everyone of us will continue to walk into potentially dangerous situations and put our lives on the line in order to do that, but if we can work together as a community to pick up the phone, 'Before shots are fired' and allow the Sheriff's Dept to do what it is trained to do then all lives will be a lot safer." the UnderSheriff stated. "I am aware that this is all coming in the run up to the Holidays and it is no accident that we choose to launch this campaign now. This is a time of year when a lot of people are under considerable stress, when tempers flare, when people come together at parties and events all over the city and when people have perhaps a little too much to drink, and its precisely times like those, when minor offenses committed by another person, sometimes even months before can suddenly become huge issues. That is why we are asking you to think about this now at this time." he added "It was mentioned at a recent council meeting that launching this campaign is going to mean a huge increase in call outs for us. Well to that, I say so be it. The SD would rather attend a hundred call outs where we can simply have a chat with all parties, issue warnings or cautions and send everyone on their way with, than attend ten incidences where people are seriously injured or loose their lives, especially at this time of year. So lets work to during time of peace and joy and beyond, to pick up the phone, make a call and make this city a safer place for all of us."