Highlands Police Department changes up road checkpoint strategy

Highlands Police Department began running manned checkpoints at most entrances to Highlands at the end of March to keep all nonessential visitors from entering Town.

After a few days of daily checkpoints at varying times and locations, Town Manager Josh Ward and several Commissioners said they felt the checkpoints were working. Read full article HERE.

“These road checks are really working well,” said Ward. “Let’s continue to do that, keep an aggressive approach and ask people why they’re coming to Town.”

However, after a week or so the checkpoints disappeared, replaced by a strong presence of law enforcement when entering Town by HPD and Macon County Sheriff Office units.

Highlands Police Chief Bill Harrell said the checkpoints have not completely stopped, but HPD is keeping their strategy under wraps for the public’s protection.

“We’re not telling all the things were doing to gain and confirm compliance as much as we legally can,” said Harrell. “That defeats the purpose, as well as the media telling everyone what we are and are not doing so the selfish/self-absorbed COVIDIOTS can develop a work around. It does nobody any good and works against the ‘we’re in this together’ motto for the public’s safety.”

Highlands Board of Commissioners have an emergency meeting scheduled at 8 a.m. on Friday to review the Town’s state of emergency and to strategize how to begin opening businesses in town in coordination with Governor Roy Cooper’s plan to lift restrictions throughout the state. Read full article HERE.

Article and photos by Brian O’Shea
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2 thoughts on “Highlands Police Department changes up road checkpoint strategy

  1. So this is Chief Harrell idea of “working together.”

    “so the selfish/self-absorbed COVIDIOTS can develop a work around. It does nobody any good and works against the ‘we’re in this together’ motto for the public’s safety.”

    I don’t consider name calling working together. Im sure tourists and second homeowners would really appreciate being called selfish / self-absorbed “COVIDIOTS”.

    • Why is the police chief calling people selfish and COVIDIOTS? I don’t understand why the people running Highlands have not taken any courses to learn how to speak in public.

      Also I have been through the check points twice. They are useless. Both times I said I am going home and the officer said ok. Anyone can say that. How is that keeping people out? Having the town and hiking trails shut down is what is keeping people out. I do not the the road checks have stopped anyone from driving into town who wants to.

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