To protect its new members from bullets, the Callaway County Sheriff's Office reserve unit is raffling off a gun.
The Callaway County Sheriff's Patrol is currently holding an auction for a Remington 870 Express 12 GA shotgun. The patrol is selling 1,000 tickets for $1 a ticket or $5 for six, with the winner being announced after its April 9 meeting - just in time for spring turkey season, which opens April 21.
Patrol Secretary and Treasurer Randy Railton said the self-funded volunteer reserve group has held fundraisers over the years such as barbecues or large-item raffles at the Kingdom of Callaway County Fair, but dwindling membership has made it difficult to be out hosting events.
Now, with a recent high of 16 members and two potential incoming recruits, the patrol has the manpower - and the need - to raise some money.
"We were at our January meeting and someone said "why don't we see if we an sell chances for a shotgun and see if we can raise enough money to buy some body armor for some of the new members,'" Railton said. "We're the reserve unit here in Callaway County, we're not supported by anything, we provide our own equipment and buy our own uniforms ... and then we're also a full-fledged deputy to come in and help out during any type of event."
Tickets are available from any Callaway County Sheriff's Patrol member and from Approved Automotive in Fulton. The pump shotgun was given at cost by Briggs Gun Shop, and features a synthetic stock and customizable choke tubes.