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Press Release

HCSO Announces Inaugural Sheriff’s Citizens Academy


Hamilton County, TN – Sheriff Austin Garrett and the men and women of the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office are proud to announce the inaugural Sheriff’s Citizens Academy has officially begun and is now in its third week of class.

The creation and implementation of a Sheriff’s Citizens Academy is part of Sheriff Austin Garrett’s vision to make our agency’s policies, operations, and activities more transparent to our community and give our citizens the opportunity to learn more about how their sheriff’s office works on a daily basis.

The inaugural HCSO Citizens Academy is comprised of (9) local leaders representing a diverse group of community organizations, churches, businesses, and public service agencies. Throughout the (40) hour academy, attendees will learn about every aspect of our agency’s history and operations including our Patrol, School Resource Deputy, Narcotics, and Investigative Services.

Participants will also take part in numerous training exercises covering active shooter response, vehicle stops, firearms and weapons drills, building clearing and tactics, and less lethal actions for deputy self-defense. Lastly, attendees will learn about the HCSO’s Peer Support & Employee Health and Wellness program, General Counsel’s Office, and tour numerous facilities related to the safety and security of Hamilton County.

“As Sheriff, I want our citizens to know we are ‘your’ Sheriff’s Office. The HCSO’s purpose is to serve and protect the entire community of Hamilton County and a large part of our mission is to build trust and positive relationships. As part of my vision to always add value in all we do, the creation and implementation of a Sheriff’s Citizens Academy will help reinforce our ability to foster meaningful relationships with the citizens we are so proud to serve,” stated Sheriff Austin Garrett.

The participants in this inaugural Sheriff’s Citizens Academy are as follows:

• Mr. Freddie Brooks

Retired Chattanooga Firefighter, (28 Years)

Executive Director of the International Association of Black Professional Firefighters

• Mr. James Howard

Host, Sunny 92.3 WDEF Radio

Host of WTVC’s This N That

• Reverend Sterling Jetton

Pastor, Shelter Church, East Brainerd

• Ms. Stacy Johnson

Executive Director, La Paz – Chattanooga

• Mrs. Candy Johnson

President & Chief Executive Officer, Chattanooga Urban League

• Mr. Kelvin Scott

Host, 93.5 FM’s Intouch with the Community Show, Brewer Media

Administrative Assistant to Bishop Kevin Adams, Olivet Baptist Church

TVA Nuclear Division

• Dr. Robert Sharpe

Chief Operations Officer, Hamilton County Department of Education

• Dr. Jeffrey Wilson

Pastor, New United Missionary Baptist Church

Former Hamilton County School Board Member

• Mr. Lacy Word

Transportation Manager II, Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT)

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Phone: (423) 209-7000