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October 28, 2013 10:13 PM

Lincoln County Seeing An Increase In Felony Crimes

Canton, SD

There has been a lot of traffic recently at the Lincoln County Courthouse in Canton. Besides several high profile cases, State's Attorney Thomas Wollman says the county is seeing more crimes now than ever before.

"Unfortunately, over the last three years now we've seen an increase in serious felony crimes in Lincoln County and in particular from 2011 we filed about 136 felony charges, in 2012 we filed 190 felony charges and I believe that we're on track to go 200, maybe in that 215 neighborhood," Wollman said.

Lincoln County has grown rapidly over the past few years.  But Wollman points to the last decade to show it's not necessarily the population growth that's to blame. 

"Through those ten years, we enjoyed a relatively low crime rate, so hopefully it's an anomaly, hopefully there will be a correction but at this point and time we have rapidly gown in our felony filings," Wollman said.

As crimes continue, the county may need to add to its workforce.

"I think that we're on top of it at this point. If we continue with these higher filings and these higher numbers, we undoubtedly need to add staff," Wollman said.

Despite an increase of individuals making an appearance in Lincoln County courtrooms, Wollman is happy with how the area is taking shape.

"Looking to the communities of Harrisburg and Tea as they grow closer and Sioux Falls grows closer to them that's been a very positive growth," Wollman said.

Wollman also added that he is not sure what can be done to help prevent the randomness of crime, but he is happy with the job the county is currently doing.

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