This week's crime report for Clay County Florida, provided by the Clay County Sheriff's Office.
GREEN COVE SPRINGS – Emory, a self-proclaimed “backyard mechanic,” was holding a chipboard instead of a wrench during an instructional class on Saturday at the Clay County Sheriff’s …
GREEN COVE SPRINGS – Emory, a self-proclaimed “backyard mechanic,” was holding a chipboard instead of a wrench during an instructional class on Saturday at the Clay County Sheriff’s Office’s Fleet Maintenance Building.
The inmate jumped at the opportunity to learn a trait instead of simply counting down the months until his release from the Clay County Jail.
“This is also a nice way to get out of out of out of jail,” he said. “I’ve learned a lot. The biggest thing I’ve learned is how much I didn’t know and how I was doing a lot of things wrong.
“This has been very educational. We’ve been taught how to work down a checklist. There’s so much more going on that I realized.”
there. So we have whatever you’ve learned here
are very educational tires, mostly so far. This is only our second class. So tires mostly and how it does the checklist on the vehicles. Yeah, well, there’s a lot of stuff involved.”
When Emory is to be released on Sept. 5, he probably will have the skills to work at any dealership or garage.
“If we give them some skills and help them find jobs, they won’t be out on the streets and committing crimes,” said Patty Atkinson, the Program Unit Supervisor for the Clay County Sheriff’s Office.
The agency created programs to help inmates make easier adjustments back into society. Besides serving time, learning kitchen skills, embroidering, sewing, floor maintenance, auto repairs and earning DCL truck-driving licenses has become an essential part of the rehabilitation process.
Wally Tennant, a CCSO fleet technician, teaches the class on Saturday mornings at the maintenance building.
The idea to add auto mechanics to the program came after “some brainstorming” between Atkinson and jail Chris Sueflohn, the Chief of Jail Detention, and CCSO Lt. Larry Henry
“We want to get these guys their ASE (Automotive Service Excellence) certification,” Atkinson said. “We’re only doing it two at a time so they can concentrate on learning a skill.”
The second inmate is John. Like Emory, he said he was familiar with working on cars.
“I worked in the motor pool for the Department of Corrections, and I know how to work on my own vehicles on the street,” John said. “I knew one of the other inmates who did this, and he said it was great.”
John is scheduled to walk out the front doors on May 6. He’s looking forward to starting a new career working in a garage.
“On a scale of one-through-10, I’d give this a 20,” John said.
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