Summerdale plans to reduce police jurisdiction

SUMMERDALE, Alabama (WKRG) – Police services in Baldwin County could be very different around this time next year.

“Baldwin County is a big county. It’s bigger than the state of Rhode Island and when you put all the excess jurisdiction over the county, it’s going to spark a debate, ”said Summerdale Police Chief Kevin Brock.

He is talking about Senate Bill 107. Earlier this year, the law went into effect, requiring municipalities to limit their policing skills across Alabama. The town of Summerdale is now deciding how far it wants this jurisdiction to extend. Currently, the jurisdiction stretches for about a mile and a half outside the city limits.

“Some jurisdictions are considering retreating within their city limits and I think some have already committed to doing so. We are still talking with the community, ”he said.

If Summerdale brings officers back within city limits, that means the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office will be the primary body responsible for other areas. In turn, this could affect some of the response times to residents outside of city limits.

“They’re stretched and it’ll stretch them even more if we decide to do this, they’ll have to answer some calls. This will affect the community on response times for non-urgent things, ”said Chief Brock.

But, reducing the jurisdiction, which currently covers around 50 square miles, could save the city money and ultimately help develop the community with residents eventually wishing to annex themselves within city limits for police protection. This is a decision that the municipal council will take in the coming weeks with the help of the community.

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