05/21/14 — Ten called Tuesday as part of Goldsboro Partners Against Crime

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Ten called Tuesday as part of Goldsboro Partners Against Crime

By John Joyce
Published in News on May 21, 2014 1:46 PM

The number of probationers notified by the Goldsboro Partners Against Crime to either change their ways or be sent to prison grew by 10 Tuesday, bringing the total number to 85.

Eleven have reoffended and two such cases have already gone federal, GPAC coordinator and Violent Crimes Task Force member Capt. Teresa Chiero said.

GPAC is a combined community and law enforcement effort brought to Goldsboro in 2012 to cut down on rising violence in and around the city.

Its reach now extends to all of Wayne County, including the town of Mount Olive, whose police chief, Brian Rhodes, attended his second call-in Tuesday.

"Don't think you can come down to Mount Olive and do what you're doing here and we aren't going to know. You can't," he told the offenders.

The stern delivery of the law enforcement portion of the call-in matched in intensity the emotion brought by the community side that began the evening meeting.

Goldsboro police Capt. Theresa Cox and community member Craig Doubt shared with the offenders what it is like for a mother, a father, to bury their own child.

Ms. Cox lost her son in 2004.

Doubt's son was killed in 2007.

The parting message, however, came with a bit of compassion and a general sense of hope for those willing to help themselves.

Derrick Wootsen of the N.C. Department of Commerce invited each of the offenders down to his offices located on "Wayne Memorial Drive right behind the Waffle House."

Wootsen told the offenders his main priority is to help get them jobs.

Other services provided by the employment service include helping former offenders obtain high school diplomas or GEDs, job training skills and federal bonding for employers.

Some of the offenders perked their heads up at the prospect of learning a trade such as plumbing or electrical work.

Asked by an offender to explain federal bonding for employers, Wootsen described it as insurance for the employer.

"If they hire you and you do anything like embezzlement or larceny, and they will prosecute you if you do and you go to jail, we pay (the employer) back that bond, usually $5,000," he said.

There is no bond for workmanship, Wootsen said.

"If they let you go just because you can't catch on and you can't do the job, we don't pay for that," he said.