Chil­dren's cen­ter to re­ceive CPD funds

Seized drug money to pur­chase equip­ment

The Covington News - - Local gas price tracker -

Cov­ing­ton Po­lice Chief Stacey Cot­ton re­ceived per­mis­sion from the Cov­ing­ton City Coun­cil Mon­day night to use seized drug money to as­sist in pur­chas­ing equip­ment for A Child’s Voice, the child ad­vo­cacy cen­ter ser­vic­ing the Al­covy Cir­cuit.

The cen­ter, which serves New­ton, Wal­ton and sur­round­ing coun­ties, is de­signed to work with chil­dren who are be­lieved to be vic­tims of sex­ual and/or phys­i­cal abuse, ac­cord­ing to District At­tor­ney Ken Wynne, who also serves on the board of the cen­ter. The cen­ter em­ploy­ees are spe­cially trained to pro­vide foren­sic ex­am­i­na­tions and in­ter­views specif­i­cally geared to­wards chil­dren and per­formed in a child-friendly en­vi­ron­ment in an ef­fort to les­son trauma for the child. Prior to the cen­ter open­ing in New­ton County, chil­dren had to be taken to At­lanta to be in­ter­viewed and ex­am­ined, which ex­perts say could fur­ther trau­ma­tize them.

As of Oct. 1 a tem­po­rary lo­ca­tion has been opened in New­ton County, but ground has been bro­ken on a fa­cil­ity in Lo­ganville that will ser­vice chil­dren of the cir­cuit. Ideally the new lo­ca­tion will open its doors Jan. 1, ac­cord­ing Wynne.

The money from CPD is the most re­cent do­na­tion the group has re­ceived and Cot­ton has pledged $20,000 worth of equip­ment to the cen­ter, which will be pur­chased with the seized funds. Ac­cord­ing to fed­eral stip­u­la­tions, seized drug money can only be used to pur­chase equip­ment and can take any­where from sev­eral months to a year to make its way back to the CPD.

“This was an op­por­tu­nity to sup­port an or­ga­ni­za­tion that di­rectly sup­ports law en­force­ment,” Cot­ton said.

For more in­for­ma­tion about child ad­vo­cacy cen­ters visit Chil­dren’s Ad­vo­cacy Cen­ters of Ge­or­gia’s Web site at www.cacga.org.

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