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April 11, 2001

By Staff
PTS: A flawed system
To the Editor:
I find it amusing that we would applaud giving Lauderdale County Deputy Sheriff's Department the ability to gather all the available knowledge on us, the average citizen, and then let them use that knowledge for whatever purpose they see fit.
The new PTS system, which was so positively reviewed by The Meridian Star ("New system helps track criminals," April 5) is sure to give average Lauderdale county residents a new title "criminal." The PTS system, like the federal criminal database system, is going to be flawed.
Amazingly, no one thought of that when The Star wrote about the woman who was informed she had a warrant out for her arrest for writing a bad check when she went to fill out an accident report. Had the woman been informed she had a bad check? Had
she been informed of her warrant prior to the moment she walked into the Sheriff's Office?
Or, sadly, had she taken care of her bad check four years ago and a mistake in record keeping allowed for the warrant to remain outstanding for her?
I know the deputies on patrol, with their lives on the line, took a deep sigh of relief knowing that this hardened criminal was finally brought to justice.
As a twenty-two year resident of Lauderdale County, I will sleep better at night knowing that deputy sheriffs with the help of their magical PTS systems, will be preparing to arrest little old ladies who accidentally write bad checks, instead of slowing down the traffic on Minnow Bucket Road, where three people have died in car accidents in the past eight months.
Erik Brown
Cole: A great loss
To the Editor:
I received news about the loss of Brian Cole from my son, who graduated and played football at MHS with Brian. While Brian was a Wildcat, I enjoyed watching him every Friday night and also the conversations we had at practice.
I can remember the time in Hattiesburg when he ran back a punt and you knew he was going to get tackled and, wham, he came around the other side for a TD. You never knew where he was going but you knew that when he got the ball it was going to be exciting.
You always could tell that team (1997) had some great players and they all would make it. I would like to thank God for letting me have the privilege of knowing Brian and getting to see him play.
All Meridianites should be proud of Brian and all the athletes that come out of Meridian and Lauderdale County. My condolences and prayers go out to the family of Brian. He will be missed but never forgotten.
I think Meridian High School should retire the #3 jersey he wore so proudly for the Wildcats. God must have needed a running back to play side by side with Walter Payton.
Mike Scott
Litter on roads deplorable
To the Editor:
I am writing to the city and county residents. Have you noticed the amount of trash on the road right-of-ways? It is deplorable and illegal to litter, and we are all responsible.
Come on, people, let's get involved and clean up this mess that is a blight to our area and keep it clean.
Earl Laird, D.V.M.
Shamrocks' campaign a huge success
To the Editor:
Even the leprechauns are green with envy over Meridian's response to the Muscular Dystrophy Association's "Shamrocks Against Dystrophy" campaign. Many thanks to the thousands of people who donated to MDA and signed paper shamrocks in businesses in February and March. Their generous participation will help MDA continue to provide families affected by neuromuscular diseases in our community with valuable services.
As one of many who has a loved one affected by a neuromuscular disease, I'm genuinely grateful for the caring support of customers and employees at convenience stores, supermarkets, restaurants and other retailers in Meridian.
The 18th annual Shamrocks Against Dystrophy campaign raised more than $10 million nationally. These donations help MDA fund almost 400 research teams worldwide.
On behalf of the millions of Americans affected in some way by the more than 40 diseases covered by MDA, thank you, and may St. Patrick bless you all year long.
Maureen McGovern
National Chairperson MDA Shamrocks Against Dystrophy
Tucson, Ariz.
Boys and Girls Club says thanks'
To the Editor:
Once again the Celebration of Excellence dinner for the Boys and Girls Club of Lauderdale County was a tremendous success. It never ceases to amaze me how caring this community can be. My spirits are always lifted when I see businesses, churches and individuals come together to support a proven youth program.
For everyone who helped make Celebration of Excellence 2001 so successful, please accept my thanks on behalf of the board of directors, staff and, most importantly, our club members. Every dollar raised is vital to the continued operations of all our units and the service we provide to the youth of this community. This dinner was our most successful ever, raising more than $60,000, which will be used to further the Boys and Girls Club mission.
In addition, we would like to thank our other remarkable benefactors who never fail to help and have done so much to make our club what it is today. These "partners" provide so much for our youth and deserve this special thank you. They include the Meridian Housing Authority, Riley Foundation, Hardy Graham Foundation, United Way and the Department of Human Services.
The Boys and Girls Club is truly a positive place for kids and has been serving this nation since 1860. What better way to influence the future of our community and nation than by helping to shape our youth.
Steve Cobb
President, Board of Directors Boys and Girls Club of Lauderdale County