Cedar Key Police Department Reports

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By Chief Bubba Castell

It appears the Arts Festival of 2008 was successful and the Chamber of Commerce did another great job of encouraging the most qualified artists to attend this annual event. Thanks to each and every one of you that gave so much of your time and the great effort contributed by all of you in making this weekend a success.

Your Police Department was somewhat busy over the weekend but most of the crowd abided by the rules of the road. We, too, appreciate the cooperation of all those attending the festival, as you are part of the fun and relaxation enjoyed by every one in attendance.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank Sheriff Johnny Smith and Lt. Sean Mullins for providing the VOICE personnel to assist us with crowd and traffic control during the festival weekend. These volunteers allowed our certified law enforcement personnel to assess other law enforcement related matters by not having to respond to slow moving traffic or other traffic and crowd-related congestion. These men and women are very courteous and conscientious, responding as directed, or wherever needed; working long hours with no compensation for their extensive involvement in assisting all law enforcement agencies throughout Levy County. If any of you ever have the opportunity to meet this exceptionally fine group of individuals please thank them for a job well done, as that is the only pay they ever receive for their dedicated service.

IT IS THE LAW - YOU MUST MOVE OVER FOR STOPPED EMERGENCY VEHICLES - As you approach a "Stopped" emergency vehicle you must "move over" out of the lane closest to the emergency vehicle. If that is not possible, or if you are on a two lane road, then you must slow down to 20 miles per hour below the posted speed limit in the area. Do not endanger yourself, or your passengers, by moving into the lane of oncoming traffic, but do slow down as you approach the emergency vehicle(s) in your lane or on the shoulder of the roadway, if traffic does not permit you to move over.

THE CEDAR KEY MARINA INSIDE BOAT RAMP HAS BEEN COMPLETED AND CURRENTLY IN USE ONCE AGAIN. The normal approach to the floating dock has not been completed, which creates a small inconvenience, but this should be repaired in the not too distant future.

BOATERS BE AWARE: THE GTO PERFORMANCE AIRBOAT FISHING TOURNAMENT will be in Cedar Key, SATURDAY, APRIL 19, with an estimated 100 airboats scheduled to participate. Too, an estimated 400 people will be in attendance during this tournament. This is just a friendly reminder to all other boaters that normally come here for fishing on the weekend to be prepared for long lines at the ramps and very few, if any, available trailer parking spots. These guys and gals usually get started early and most of the trailer parking spaces are filled before daylight. Just so you cannot say; "You should have warned us ahead of time."

Ms.Vanessa Edmunds, City Commissioner, is stepping down from her Commission Seat, with her final meeting on April 15, and she will certainly be missed by many, but especially the personnel at the Cedar Key Police Department. We appreciate her active support during her tenure on the commission, respectively wishing her success in whatever her future ambitions and endeavors may entail. She prepared herself well for each and every meeting, always vocally defending the rights of all citizens in our little community. Good luck Ms. Vanessa and we will welcome you back to the commission anytime you decide to ask for reinstatement.

Our winter visitors will soon begin their pilgrimage back to their summer homes and we respectfully request that each and every one of you come by the police department to fill out the "house check forms," which will make us aware of your absence and we can occasionally check the home in your absence. Also, all full time Cedar Key families, who will be gone for an extended period of time, are encouraged to follow this same procedure. We may not prevent a burglary of your home, but we would be able to establish a time frame, should one occur. Remember, be a good neighbor and keep a close watch on the vacant homes in your neighborhood; reporting any suspicious activity to your police department immediately. Thank you for your normal compliance with this request. Too, always be careful on your trips, as we want all of you to return safely to your home away from home next winter.

The Florida Department of Transportation "CLICK IT or TICKET" Campaign will begin in the not too distant future and we respectfully request that everyone please buckle up at all times. Also, please keep your children in an approved "child restraint seat," as nothing is more important than our children. I will be printing the applicable fines for violation of the "Click It or Ticket It Campaign" in a future release of your local newspapers. Currently, your local police officers will be giving you a friendly warning for the first offense, but the second violation will, in all probability, result in an expensive citation being issued.

Due to lack of time and mitigating circumstances I have not been able to provide the normal arrest data some of you look forward to reading about, but I promise to get back on track in the next release on April 30. I sincerely apologize for this delay, but will attempt to bring you up to date in that edition of The Cedar Key Beacon and The Cedar Key News. We are very privileged to have two local papers which continue to be very informative reference local politics; weekly happenings within Levy County and Cedar Key, as well special events throughout the entire area.

Brother David and Sister Galina Binkley returned safely from Magadan, Russia and they stated their missionary trip was very fruitful. They did have one harrowing experience with the local police in Magadan, who questioned their true reasons for being in Russia, but everything ended on a positive note. As some of us are aware, missionary work is not for the weak in faith, as the trying times far outweigh the positive situation on many occasions. Welcome home, Ya'll.

Please keep the faith and never fail to express your love for your family, friends and loved ones, since we never know when they will be taken away from us without notice. I am fortunate to be a part of a very closely knit family, which is stabilized by untold amount of friends and loved ones, who go out of their way to assist me even without being called upon. This, and my faith in the Lord, continues to be my strength in this non-committal world we live in today.

Again, thank you for reading our local newspapers; keep your faith and always abide by the golden rule.