MySaline asked readers on Nov. 29, 2016, to help answer some questions about the sign pictured above. See the answers we got below.
On November 22, 2007, MySaline reader Renee Taggart posted a picture of a road sign to the website. She was tickled at the boldness of the sign – seemingly saying that criminals should behave while they are in the county, or else turn right back around because there is plenty of room to detain them.
The question to residents was…
I’m pretty new to this county compared to some others, so I’m looking for longtime Saline County residents to help uncover the following mysteries:
- When did this sign show up?
- Is the sign still there at the county border between Pulaski & Saline?
- Is there more than one (for other county border entrances)?
- What person, agency or committee is responsible for this sign being printed and erected?
The following are comments MySaline received from people who were close to the project at that time:
- Shane Broadway – I think it was put up when the new jail was completed and opened. Either by the Sheriff or the JP out there, can’t remember exactly. Been a few years. Link
- Judy Stone – The jail opened in 2007 according to former Sheriff Phillip Mask and the signs were placed shortly before that. Link
- James Mashburn – It was put up right after the new jail was opened. I was at the open house. They had. The Q/C had the meeting there. Phil Mask was the Sheriff at the time. We talked about having more room for the offenders because at that time the jail was being only able to hold the worst offenders and having to let non-violent ones sign out or bailout. The jail opened before the complete Sheriffs office and the Deputies ever got moved in. They were in different buildings at the time. After the office opened they were all under the same roof finally. District Judge Mike Robinson took credit for the sign. He did ask Saline County Judge Lanny Fite to put signs up to help deter crime after the Jail opened. Phil Mask had the inmates moved and the jail secretly operating before anyone knew it. This was done so no problems would arise if it was made public. But Phil Mask was and is the backbone of the sign and the complete jail and sheriffs office under one roof. Link& Link
- Lanny Fite – Judge Robinson ask me to put the sign up on the same day the new jail opened. Link
- Tanya McElroy Martin – We moved to Saline County in 2003 and the sign was there then! I also believe it was erected at the time of the jails completion. Link
- Judy Stone – You’re right Tanya. When the jail was built and not in the basement of the courthouse anymore these signs were put up. We had a reputation of “slapping the wrist” due to no jail space. It changed that reputation real quick! Link
- Judy Stone – It would have been after 2001 cause that’s when he became sheriff. Link