Village Police Revive Most Wanted List
The Southampton Village Police Wanted List is circulated throughout the village. This one was photographed at the Village Cheese Shop on Main Street. Photo by Mariah Quinn
- While "Most Wanted" posters tend to bring to mind hardened criminals and sensational television shows, the Southampton Village Police have restarted an effort to clear up pending cases and outstanding warrants by publishing a somewhat tamer Most Wanted list of its own.
"This is something that we've done intermittently over the years. We started it again about a month ago," said William Wilson, the village police chief. "Within two weeks we had three people arrested who were on the poster."
The poster is created by the detective division, and, Wilson said, "we generally don't put the real petty offenses on those posters." The current crop of most wanted criminals include a man wanted for criminal possession of a controlled substance, two sought on DWI charges, and a fourth facing criminal possession of marijuana charges.
Wilson estimates the department has a list of about 400 people wanted on outstanding warrants, a number that "grows exponentially each month," in large part due to the "transient nature" of Southampton's population. The poster is part of efforts to manage that number.
The most wanted list is forwarded to other local departments and to Suffolk County. Of the three most recently arrested, two were apprehended by other departments, and the third turned himself in after seeing his picture on the poster.
The department plans to continue the program due to the "good response," Wilson said.