Security is #betteratbenning
By Gerald Williams, Bayonet & Saber /
Security officers on Fort Benning say that living on Fort Benning is one of the safest options for current and future residents.
“Before you even get on the installation we are already making security better for you,” said chief Jim Webster, physical security division.
“Security starts at the gate,” said chief of police Timothy Stevens. “Before you can even get onto the installation you have to go through a National Crime Information Center check unless you already have a vetted card.”
Webster stated that since January they have denied access to over 1000 people based on background checks.
“There are 11 disqualifying factors, and if you hit even one of those, you will be denied access to the installation,” said Stevens.
Stevens explained that background shcecks look into everything from felonies to sex offenders. Webster stated that not only are guests checked for criminal background history, but contractors are as well.
“Fort Benning is constantly growing, and because of this, we have lots of construction that goes on,” said Webster. “We want to make sure that all residents feel comfortable with whoever is allowed access to Fort Benning.”
“We also do random vehicle searches to make sure that there aren’t people sneaking onto Fort Benning in the back of a trunk.”
Security inside of Fort Benning is just as important as security outside of Fort Benning according to Stevens and Webster.
“One of the biggest factors influencing security on Fort Benning are the residents themselves. The community is made of disciplined Soldiers. Their family members are accustomed to the military way of life and it’s like having a giant neighborhood watch. If something seems out of the norm, we’re informed about it,” said Stevens.
“Outside of our residents, are other Fort Benning assets which involves police patrols, traffic law enforcement specialists, military working dogs, and detectives. A lot of our detectives our hidden in plain sight, so that you wouldn’t even know they were there,” said Webster.
Stevens also complemented the military police on their duties.
“The young warriors that come here as military police to be mentored embrace the job and love what they do,” he said. “In doing what they do, they’re dedicated to the community. They take possession and ownership over their duties.”
The Department of Emergency Services also performs quarters checks for any resident that will be away from their home for a period of time. During a quarters check, law enforcement will inspect the resident’s property while they are away to make sure there are no intruders, according to Stevens.
“All we ask is that residents let us know when they make it back to their home,” said Stevens.
With regards to the new school year, Stevens stated that drivers should pay special attention to speed limits across Fort Benning and children should be sure to walk across the crosswalk.
“Children may take certain alleys or avenues to get to a crosswalk, so it is important for drivers to stay alert as they drive on Fort Benning,” said Stevens.