Sun Herald vs. Jackson County Sheriff over helicopter records

Sheriff’s offices in two of the three Coast counties said they would have no problem letting the public know how much drug forfeiture money it has and how it spends it.

And Harrison County, which has two helicopters, said it would produce flight records within a matter a days if a formal request is made. Hancock County has no helicopters.

In Jackson County, Sheriff Mike Byrd has said none of those records are public records and he refused a Sun Herald reporter’s request for access to them.

Harrison County Chief Deputy Landon Phillips disagrees.

“That stuff is all public record,” he said. “We’re under federal guidelines on this spending so we’re not going to operate outside those guidelines.”

Sun Herald