Monthly Archives: February 2013

Watt Named Public Information Officer by Sheriff Mike Crenshaw

Sheriff Mike Crenshaw is pleased to announce the hiring of Jimmy Watt to be the new public information officer for the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office. Mr. Watt was selected from a number of qualified applicants to fill this position. He will be responsible for establishing and maintaining cooperative relationships with the media in addition to providing up to date and correct information on current incidents and events to the citizens of Oconee County. The Sheriff’s Office is committed to keeping the public informed about law enforcement issues. Sheriff Crenshaw said “this position will allow us to build upon our mission of building partnerships with the citizens. In order to keep our residents safe, we must keep them informed. I look forward to having a professional such as Jimmy to be our spokesperson as we move forward.”

This is another step in the restructuring process undertaken by the new sheriff that was created within the current budget. Mr. Watt is an Oconee County native. He will begin his new job on February 25, 2013. The attachment includes a photo.

Below is a brief summary of Mr. Watt’s background:

•    Over 20 years’ experience in the media field.

•    Has been the traffic reporter for the morning and evening newscasts on WYFF News 4 full-time since May of 2001.

•    Has been the play-by-play voice for high school football on WGOG in Walhalla, SC since 2003.

•    Also an ordained Southern Baptist Minister, was the Associate Pastor at Welcome Baptist Church from 2010 – 2013 and recently accepted the interim pastorship at Mill Shoal Baptist Church in Royston, GA.

Mr. Watt released the following statement:

“I am extremely excited about this new opportunity with the Oconee County Sheriff’s Department.  I appreciate the confidence that Sheriff Crenshaw and all the men and women with the department have placed in me.  I believe that Sheriff Crenshaw and the command staff have a great vision of where they want to lead the deparment and I am truly humbled to be a part of that.  I leave behind some wonderful friends and colleagues in Greenville, but I am looking forward to getting to work as the Public Information Officer on February 25th.”

Jimmy Watt

Woman Arrested for Bomb Threats

A Seneca woman was arrested in connection with a recent rash of bomb threats in Oconee County, according to deputies.

Oconee County deputies said 38-year-old Melissa Griggs was arrested on an outstanding warrant issued for a trespassing charge at the Walmart store in Seneca. Investigators said Griggs was suspected in connection with calls made to 911 between Sunday and Monday. They said that bomb threats were conveyed during the calls. On Friday, deputies charged Griggs with eight counts of making a bomb threat. She was being held in the Oconee County jail on $226,000 bond.

Investigators said they have not yet connected Griggs to bomb-threat calls that were made before Sunday. On Feb. 6, Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Kevin Davis said authorities had investigated 10 bomb threats in the past two days. Eight of the threats were made Tuesday at as late as 11 p.m., Davis said. He said the calls have been made to banks, schools, a McDonald’s restaurant and even the hospital. Deputies said the investigation into the bomb threats is still active.

Griggs was eventually charged with 29 counts of Making a Bomb Threat or Convey False Information about a Bomb Threat, 1st Offense. Griggs pled guilty to the charges and was sentenced to 10 years in prison, suspended to 3 years to run concurrently. Griggs was given credit for time served, plus, Griggs was sentenced to 5 years probation and was ordered to pay restitution.