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Sheriff Releases Midterm State of the Sheriff Report

By Randy Hargrove

Houston County Sheriff

HOUSTON COUNTY –  Here we are at the midterm of my first term in office already. It seems like only yesterday I took office. I guess it’s because we’ve been so busy. Speaking of busy, I know that many of you sometimes wonder what your Sheriff’s Office has been doing. So, with the help of some of our staff, I’ve put together a “State of the Sheriff’s Office Midterm” information article. 

Let me start by doing a recap of 2021 and then I’ll move on to 2022. I’ve included some stats to help explain what we’ve been doing.

On our very first night, a man became lost in the woods during very cold sub-freezing weather. We were able to find him and return him to his family before he succumbed to hypothermia.

In February, we experienced one of the worst freezes to hit Houston County in years. There were power outages, icy roads and busted water pipes everywhere.  But the citizens of our great county pulled together with their time and resources and helped their neighbors in need.  

On April 6th tragedy struck our office when we were informed that while on vacation Investigator Billy Bob Christian passed away. He was a friend to everyone he met and a source of strength for all who knew him. 

August brought COVID to our community.  Chief Dickey and I were both hospitalized with COVID pneumonia at the same time.  

December brought more tragedy to the Sheriff’s Office.  Hank Robinson passed away unexpectedly.  He was an awesome jailer, full of life, loved his job and was always excited about being at work.  

2022 started off with a bang with COVID hitting us again and once again our employees rose to the occasion.  They worked long hours and were tired and worn out but they never wavered.  

In March 2022, tornados hit Houston County. Again, our citizens came together and helped meet the needs of our community.

We started the first ever “paid cadet program” for the Sheriff’s Office and in July 2022, graduated cadets Kasey Ballard, from dispatch, and Gordon Denman, from the jail.  Both are now deputies and are serving our citizens well.

In July 2022, one of our long time Courthouse Deputies, Doug King passed away. He is missed by all of us.

In December 2022, we said goodbye to Sgt. McCreight who left the office after 17 years of service after winning the J.P. race to become our new Justice of the Peace for Precinct One.  

The following is a list of some things we’ve been busy doing:

Calls answered:

  • 2021 – 20,901
  • 2022 – 21,701
  • Total – 42,602

Calls for service:


2021 – 186

2022 – 185 

Total – 371


2021 – 146

2022 – 134

Total – 280


2021 – 789 

2022 – 639

Total – 1,428

Stray Livestock:

2021 – 602

2022 – 781 

Total – 1,383


2021 – 480 

2022 – 538

Total – 1,018


2021 – 418 

2022 – 416 

Total – 834 (120K Miles)

Sex Offenses:

2021 – 16

2022 – 20

Total – 36


2021 – 13

2022 – 37

Total – 50

Drug Cases With Arrest:

2021 – 34

2022 – 23

Total – 57

Total # of cases 2 yrs: 5,457 

Needless to say, your sheriff’s deputies and dispatchers have been very busy. 

Our Courthouse Deputies have been very busy, also. In a five month period (8/1/22-12/31/22) there were 4834 visitors at the courthouse. They served 61 warrants, made 24 arrests and posted 33 notices.

Also, our Sheriff’s Office is one of 3 TCOLE approved training providers in this part of the state. We hosted many classes to help advance law enforcement training and professionalism. These included four jail schools, (120 training hours each) training 52 students (649 total training hours) to be state certified jailers. 

Other courses taught included 174 students (191 training hours) in Mandated Legislative Updates, Civil Process, New Detectives, Firearms, Traffic and other intermediate courses.  Having this ability saves our county thousands of dollars each year on training that we would normally have to pay for. 

To give you an idea of how busy our jailers are, during 2021 and 2022 they booked 2,183 people into jail. They also saw to the inmates’ needs mandated by the Texas Jail Commission for an average of 112 inmates per day (meals, medical, getting ready for transport to court, etc.)

At the end of the day, it’s not about us. It’s about serving the citizens of Houston County and protecting their property, lives and rights guaranteed by our constitution. Thank you for your continued support.

Greg Ritchie can be reached at [email protected]

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