New sheriff in town

Sheriff Terry Garrett, right, was sworn into office on Jan. 1 by 382nd District Judge Brett Hall, left. Garrett's wife, Dr. Shelley Garrett, holds the Bible.

Sheriff Terry Garrett, joined by his wife Dr. Shelley Garrett and family, was sworn in on Jan. 1 by 382nd District Judge Brett Hall as the 18th sheriff of Rockwall County.

Garrett began his 40-plus-year career in public safety in 1976, while still in high school, working as an ambulance attendant. He joined the Rockwall Volunteer Fire Department in 1978 while continuing to work as an EMT for American Air/Land Ambulance and as a dispatcher for the Rockwall Police Department.

For 26 years, Garrett worked for and served the citizens of Rockwall as a patrol officer, initiated the department's crime prevention program, conducted juvenile investigations and public information duties, and was the lieutenant in charge of criminal investigations, records, evidence, training, and community service. During those years, he was also an active member of the Rockwall Volunteer Fire Department, serving as chief and training officer. He is a dive/recovery specialist with certification from the Underwater Institute/SWTSU/TSU

Garrett was appointed Director of Public Safety for the city of Heath in 2006, where he served for 14 1/2 years as both police and fire chief.

Garrett will now lead more than 130 sheriff’s office personnel and a 243-bed detention center with an expansion underway.

“I look forward to continuing service to citizens of Rockwall County and working with a great team of professionals at the sheriff’s office,” Garrett said.

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