- Associated Press - Sunday, April 20, 2014

AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) - Business owners in Augusta are hoping that a new public safety unit will change a perception some people have that the city’s downtown area is dangerous.

The Augusta Chronicle reports (https://bit.ly/1mjvxaJ ) that the plan unveiled by the Richmond County sheriff includes a new unit made up of certified deputies and community safety officers.

The community safety officers, who will wear fluorescent yellow shirts with reflectors, won’t be certified and won’t have arrest powers. But they will be trained by law enforcement instructors to observe and report criminal or suspicious activities, aid in emergencies, prevent crime and assist with traffic control.

Barry White, the president and CEO of the Augusta Convention and Visitors Bureau, said anything that can be done to enhance a feeling of safety downtown will be a benefit.

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Information from: The Augusta Chronicle , https://www.augustachronicle.com

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