News from the desk of Sheriff Potter

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“In Remembrance: Paying Tribute to Fallen Law Enforcement Officers”

As we approach National Police Week this year, I find myself once again reflecting on the invaluable service of our law enforcement officers, both locally here in DeSoto County and across the entirety of the United States. These brave professionals serve as the frontline defenders, safeguarding us from those who seek to inflict harm and perpetrate crimes upon our communities.

In 1962, President John F. Kennedy designated May 15 as Peace Officers Memorial Day and the week surrounding it as Police Week. During this time, law enforcement officers from around the globe gather in Washington, DC, to honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.

Though we may not physically be in our nation's capital, let us collectively take a moment from our daily routines to stand in solidarity with our fellow citizens and law enforcement personnel, commemorating the lives of those who have laid down their lives in service to others.

Many of us may personally know someone or have connections to individuals within the law enforcement community who have tragically lost their lives while fulfilling their duty as protectors. Our hearts ache for the families left behind. We empathize with the children who have lost a parent, the spouses facing an uncertain future, and the parents mourning the loss of their sons or daughters.

While our DeSoto County Sheriff’s Office has been fortunate in recent years to not lose a Deputy Sheriff in the line of duty, we must not forget the sacrifices of those who came before us. Reflecting on our history, we remember Deputy Sheriff Herbert Julius Hard, slain in 1892 during a raid on a gambling den; Deputy Sheriff Charles Edward Williams, shot in 1903 while intervening in a fight; and Deputy Sheriff John Henry Wiggins, killed in 1916 while attempting to apprehend a murderer. These brave souls gave their lives to uphold the law and protect our communities.

Allow me to share the words of President Ronald Reagan, spoken during the Observance of Police Week and Peace Officers Memorial Day in 1982: “Those Officers who have made the supreme sacrifice have demonstrated their devotion to the fundamental values of decency so essential to the well-being of American Life.” Let us heed his call to honor the memory of those who have fallen while serving and protecting their fellow citizens.

I extend my sincere gratitude to each of you for taking a moment to remember and honor the fallen law enforcement officers who have bravely served our communities.

Be Kind, Be Safe, God Bless.
Sheriff Jim Potter