Law enforcement officers typically are responsible for maintaining public order and safety, enforcing the law, and preventing, detecting, and investigating criminal activities. More often than not, when these men and women who follow their passion and calling begin their journey as an LEO, they are patrol officers first, then as their individual strengths are discovered, they are encouraged to pursue extra training, which will eventually uncover skills and talents they didn’t know they had. Such is the case with this week’s Behind the Badge.
Chief Deputy Nick Robertson took time to share with The Crossroads Chronicle his journey. Deputy Robertson is a 2001 graduate of Emanuel County Institute. He received his Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Liberty University in 2018 and is currently in his senior year of his master’s in human services in counseling at Liberty University.
I asked him why he decided to become a LEO, and he was very forthcoming with his response.
“I have a few reasons. One, I wanted to change the negative view society had towards law enforcement. Two, I have always been a defender at heart. Most of the trouble I got into as a youth was because I was defending someone else. Three, I wanted to be an investigator. This was my driving desire until I actually started working as a patrol officer. Throughout my career, I turned it down three times until I was ‘volun-told’ I was going to investigation. I liked being a patrol officer because I was able to be the first responder to the crisis people was experiencing. Being an investigator offers vital assistance, but nothing compares to the ability to help in the most critical time in someone’s life. I do not regret the experience of being an investigator. I learned that all areas of law enforcement are important to the success of a community.”
Deputy Robertson has a total of 13 years in service. He graduated the law enforcement academy in 2009 and started his first assignment at in his hometown at Twin City Police Department. From there, he went to work for Swainsboro Police Department in 2011 and moved to the Emanuel County Sheriff’s Office in 2013, which is where he is currently employed. In 2013, he started at the Emanuel County Sheriff’s Office under the Field Operations Division as a patrol deputy serving civil and criminal warrants, detention transports, domestic violence/miscellaneous calls, and court security. He was appointed to serve on the traffic safety division in 2014, working driving under the influence of drug/alcohol cases, traffic accidents, and highway speed detouring. While still serving the community in a law enforcement capacity, in 2015, he began serving on the board of trustees at the Herrington Homestead Georgia Sheriff’s Youth Home. In 2016, Robertson was assigned to the Criminal Investigation’s Division (C.I.D.), which encompasses crimes against persons, including property, financial, and sexual and other violent crimes. As of January 2021, he serves the office of the sheriff as the agency’s chief deputy, overseeing the various divisions of the sheriff’s office.
Deputy Robertson says the part he loves most about his job is being able to be a sound and reasonable voice for people who are experiencing hardship in their life. Sometimes, people just need help without judgement of their current situation.
When asked what the badge means to him, he responded, “The one who wears it is an agent of God, meaning they should be loyal, trustworthy, loving mercy, loving justice, compassionate, steadfast under pressure, skilled, and place others above themselves. When I see my badge, I am compelled to remember that I must display the image of Christ above myself.”
Every LEO has a support system, and Deputy Robertson is no different ,stating, “Not to be redundant, but the most faithful above all is my Heavenly Father. I have been able to talk to Him when I couldn’t talk to my family or friends. When I had to confront some scary situations, He was my biggest supporter. Other than Him, my support system is my family. My wife, mother, sister, father, daughter, and son have always been present to offer me support. I don’t believe I would have made it to this point in life without them. My wife, however, is the main person in my family who deals most with the different aspects of my job. In asking her how does she deal with it, her response is that she prays and trusts that God will keep me safe which brings her comfort and peace.”
Deputy Robertson can often be found on the tennis or basketball court on his days off to help with stress. He also loves riding his motorcycle a Yamaha sport bike.
“The peace that comes with riding the beautiful countryside calms me down on the worst of days.”
I ended our interview by asking Deputy Robertson what were some issues that he has to deal with under the current atmosphere in our country. His response was a tribute composed by Paul Harvey that speaks to the current atmosphere and what an officer deals with:
“A Policeman is a composite of what all men are, the mingling of a saint and sinner, dust and deity.
Gulled statistics wave the fan over the stinkers, underscore instances of dishonesty and brutality because they are “new”. What they really mean is that they are exceptional, unusual, not commonplace.
“Buried under the frost is the fact: Less than one-half of one percent of policemen misfit the uniform. That’s a better average than you’d find among clergy!
“What is a policeman made of? He, of all men, is once the most needed and the most unwanted. He’s a strangely nameless creature who is “sir” to his face and “fuzz” to his back.
“He must be such a diplomat that he can settle differences between individuals so that each will think he won. But…If the policeman is neat, he’s conceited; if he’s careless, he’s a bum. If he’s pleasant, he’s flirting; if not, he’s a grouch.
“He must make an instant decision which would require months for a lawyer to make.
“But… If he hurries, he’s careless; if he’s deliberate, he’s lazy. He must be first to an accident and infallible with his diagnosis. He must be able to start breathing, stop bleeding, tie splints and, above all, be sure the victim goes home without a limp. Or expect to be sued.
“The police officer must know every gun, draw on the run, and hit where it doesn’t hurt. He must be able to whip two men twice his size and half his age without damaging his uniform and without being “brutal”. If you hit him, he’s a coward. If he hits you, he’s a bully.
“A policeman must know everything-and not tell. He must know where all the sin is and not partake.
“A policeman must, from a single strand of hair, be able to describe the crime, the weapon, and the criminal- and tell you where the criminal is hiding.
“But… If he catches the criminal, he’s lucky; if he doesn’t, he’s a dunce. If he gets promoted, he has political pull; if he doesn’t, he’s a dullard. The policeman must chase a bum lead to a dead-end, stake out ten nights to tag one witness who saw it happen but refused to remember.
“The policeman must be a minister, a social worker, a diplomat, a tough guy, and a gentleman.
And, of course, he’d have to be genius….For he will have to feed a family on a policeman’s salary.”
Keep up the good fight, Deputy Robertson. The silent majority and The Chronicle prays for you and all your law enforcement brothers and sisters each day and thanks you for holding that Thin Blue Line.