The Harnett County Sheriff Wayne Coats decided in light of all the Police Shootings going on in the nation he would finally do what his Deputies have wanted for a very long time. He would put “In God We Trust” on every Patrol vehicle.
“We’re living in some troublesome times right now,” Coats said. “People shooting people, officers being shot by people. It’s just the right thing.
“We’re all concerned with what’s going on in our country right now and I think we need God now more than ever.”
Sgt. Travis Daggett said the message of “In God We Trust” is not just the right thing for the community but it’s also a message for him when he’s out on patrol.
“No matter what, I have God on my side and it’s just that kind of reminder to me,” Daggett said.
Sheriff Coats said the community feedback has been overwhelmingly positive however a national organization is speaking out against the sheriff’s decision.
“We recognize that it’s inappropriate to place religious statements on government property,” said Patrick Elliot, staff attorney with the Freedom from Religion Foundation. “The sheriff should not abuse his government position to promote his religious views.”
While Sheriff Coats said he knew there would be a little pushback, it’s what his deputies and most of the community wants.
“I’m not going to let the state separate me from my lord and savior,” he said.
Taxpayers did not have to pay for the emblems. Officials say the money was raised by citizens of Harnett and surrounding counties.
“We all felt it was the perfect thing to do, the right thing to do, and every one of us was on board with it from the beginning,” Daggett said.