Audrain County Sheriff responds to critics of viral Facebook post

1 month 1 week 6 days ago Saturday, May 11 2019 May 11, 2019 Saturday, May 11, 2019 9:12:00 PM CDT May 11, 2019 in News
By: Spencer Humphrey, KOMU 8 Digital Producer
loading

MEXICO – Audrain County Sheriff Matt Oller posted to Facebook Saturday to address criticism about a previous Facebook post he made in relation to an arrest.

Oller posted to the Audrain County Sheriff’s Department’s official Facebook page just after 3 p.m. to address criticism he received after his post about a woman's arrest went viral Wednesday.

According to the initial post, Amanda Smith drove to the jail on a revoked license to bail out a friend. While deputies were booking her, they noticed she had a bag of  meth.

In the post, Oller wrote, "I can't make this stuff up." 

Smith’s mother later told KOMU 8 News Oller was out of line by writing what she described as a snide post about her daughter. 

"The media post, inexplicably, took on a life of its own," Oller wrote in an email to KOMU 8 News on Thursday. "It was really meant as a media release AND solid advice of what NOT to do when you go to a Sheriff's Office or Police Station."

In Saturday’s post, Oller said the community’s response “caused a great deal of reflection” on his part. He said he did not regret making the post and would do so again.

“This wasn’t about Ms. Smith, although it appears some think it was,” Oller wrote. “She happened to be the person that was involved. Given the circumstances, it wouldn’t have mattered who it was, the same thing would have happened on my end.”

Oller said he did fail to mention in his original post that Smith was innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

“That was an oversight on my part, however, realistically, that does not change the bearing or legality of anything,” Oller wrote. “That’s a mistake that I will make every effort not to make again.”

Oller said the post was not meant to make fun of those dealing with addiction.

“This wasn’t about addiction, although some apparently think it was,” Oller wrote.

He said he has worked in the past to help addicts and would never do something to alienate them.

“Addicts NEED folks who are biased to be on their side to advocate for them (not to be confused with enable them),” Oller wrote. “On more than one occasion, I have personally advocated with the ‘system’ in favor of addicts.”

Oller said he was not trying to make light of addiction in the post. Instead, he said he wanted to address the potential threats the crime Smith is accused of poses toward jail safety. 

"The responsibility for ensuring it operates safely and securely for my staff, the community and the inmates, fall squarely upon my shoulders," Oller wrote. 

He said Wednesday's post wasn't supposed to be humorous or disrespectful but rather meant to “lighten the tone of the frustration with what had happened.”

However, Oller said he still finds it important to look for humor in certain situations.

“I try to find humor and positives in most things,” Oller wrote. “If I didn’t, life would be pretty sad all of the time given the things I see and experience daily. If folks thought that was wrong, then so be it.”

Oller ended the post by saying he would have—and will continue—to make similar posts, no matter who commits the crime, even if it's someone who works for him. 

“It will be done as a warning to others who may try such things that we’re watching, and we’re serious, so DON’T DO THAT,” Oller wrote.

He said he understands people have different ways of interpreting messages, but that won’t stop him from making posts like Wednesday’s.

“If you want to view it as ‘public shaming,’ that’s your opinion,” Oller wrote. “But as long as someone is putting the safety and security of my staff, the inmates and the jail at risk, they will be called out for it, regardless of the storm that follows.”

(Below is Oller's initial post from Wednesday, followed by Saturday's response.)

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - Jefferson City's Department of Public Works marked June 30th as the final day for debris collection. The... More >>
6 hours ago Monday, June 24 2019 Jun 24, 2019 Monday, June 24, 2019 3:30:00 AM CDT June 24, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - STEMette summer camp will start Monday. The Columbia STEM Alliance in conjunction with Mizzou's College of Engineering... More >>
8 hours ago Monday, June 24 2019 Jun 24, 2019 Monday, June 24, 2019 1:49:00 AM CDT June 24, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS COUNTY (KSDK) — An officer with the North County Police Cooperative is dead and one person is in... More >>
14 hours ago Sunday, June 23 2019 Jun 23, 2019 Sunday, June 23, 2019 8:06:00 PM CDT June 23, 2019 in News
LEBANON - A Moniteau County man has been sentenced for the 2016 death of a Tipton student. Travis Clark,... More >>
15 hours ago Sunday, June 23 2019 Jun 23, 2019 Sunday, June 23, 2019 6:26:00 PM CDT June 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Jonah Morgan, the store manager of Cricket Wireless in Columbia is holding a block party on Sunday to... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, June 22 2019 Jun 22, 2019 Saturday, June 22, 2019 8:18:00 PM CDT June 22, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - One month after an EF-3 tornado tore through Jefferson City, residents and local leaders are looking back... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, June 22 2019 Jun 22, 2019 Saturday, June 22, 2019 4:12:00 PM CDT June 22, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Hundreds of protesters convened at the state capitol Saturday to rally against the state law restricting abortion.... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, June 22 2019 Jun 22, 2019 Saturday, June 22, 2019 2:44:00 PM CDT June 22, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - One man was rescued from floodwaters at Flat Branch Creek Saturday morning, according to the Columbia Fire Department.... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, June 22 2019 Jun 22, 2019 Saturday, June 22, 2019 2:44:00 PM CDT June 22, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Friends and family of Columbia's longest serving mayor, Darwin Hindman, honored his memory with a community bike ride... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, June 22 2019 Jun 22, 2019 Saturday, June 22, 2019 2:16:00 PM CDT June 22, 2019 in News
MIRAMAR, FLORIDA - Mizzou javelin throwers Ava Curry and Skylar Ciccolini take first and second place in the 2019 USA... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, June 22 2019 Jun 22, 2019 Saturday, June 22, 2019 9:57:00 AM CDT June 22, 2019 in Sports
BOONVILLE - Recent flooding aside, organizers refused to cancel "Heritage Days." High water covered railroad tracks and streets, preventing... More >>
2 days ago Friday, June 21 2019 Jun 21, 2019 Friday, June 21, 2019 11:05:00 PM CDT June 21, 2019 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - Eight sex offenders have been indicted by a grand jury following investigations by the Callaway County Sheriff's... More >>
2 days ago Friday, June 21 2019 Jun 21, 2019 Friday, June 21, 2019 9:40:00 PM CDT June 21, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - This year's amateur radio field day kicks off at 1 pm Saturday. The Central Missouri Radio Association will... More >>
2 days ago Friday, June 21 2019 Jun 21, 2019 Friday, June 21, 2019 7:39:00 PM CDT June 21, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Police Department is searching for a suspect accused of stealing "multiple weapons" from a gun shop.... More >>
2 days ago Friday, June 21 2019 Jun 21, 2019 Friday, June 21, 2019 7:33:00 PM CDT June 21, 2019 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — Missouri Rep. William Clay Jr. has joined two other Democratic congressmen in sponsoring a resolution to impeach... More >>
2 days ago Friday, June 21 2019 Jun 21, 2019 Friday, June 21, 2019 7:16:53 PM CDT June 21, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Missouri State Highway Patrol has reopened a 22-mile section of the Osage River for... More >>
2 days ago Friday, June 21 2019 Jun 21, 2019 Friday, June 21, 2019 7:06:00 PM CDT June 21, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A judge has sided with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch in a lawsuit challenging the state's effort... More >>
2 days ago Friday, June 21 2019 Jun 21, 2019 Friday, June 21, 2019 6:45:48 PM CDT June 21, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA – Battalion Chief and Fire Marshall Jim Pasley found the origin of Thursday's fire on the second floor deck... More >>
2 days ago Friday, June 21 2019 Jun 21, 2019 Friday, June 21, 2019 3:09:00 PM CDT June 21, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 73°
11am 72°
12pm 74°
1pm 75°
2pm 76°