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Virginia Sheriffs' Institute
Supporting Virginia’s Sheriffs & Deputies

Deputy Dennis Griffith retires after over 30 years of service. Dennis first started in law enforcement with the Bluefield Police Department in February of 1978. In October of 1980 he began his lengthy 28 year career with the Tazewell County Sheriff’s Office his initial assignment of three months was a jailer and subsequently transferred to the position of road deputy. Deputy Griffith is retiring as a bailiff over courtroom security, which he has served in this capacity since March of 2005. 

Since being employed by the Tazewell County Sheriff’s Office as a Deputy, Dennis has received several awards including the patriot pin, good conduct pin, semi automatic expert pin, and field training officer pin.  Dennis attended basic law enforcement school, and several in-service classes including first line supervisor school, officer survival training, crime scene photography, blood spatter, pursuit driving, civil process, PR24, asp baton, OC spray training, bomb detection basic and courtroom security as well as several courses through the Virginia State Police academy.

Dennis is a member of the Tazewell Masonic Lodge, Iron Titans Motorcycle Club and assists with many other charity type agencies in fund raisers each year including Shiners Children’s Hospital, St. Jude’s, the American Cancer Society Relay for Life, as well as many  local organizations. 

When asked if he was ever injured in the line of duty, Dennis said only one time while he was assisting a store owner get a U-Haul Trailer out of the road, a vehicle ran a red light and struck the U-Haul he was pushing resulting in breaking his leg in several places.  Dennis most enjoyable moment was getting satisfaction of knowing that he helped the citizens of Tazewell County in some small way. His goal as a deputy sheriff was to always do the best job for the task at hand. If he has made a difference in someone’s life, even just one person, he has done his job.  His advice to someone wanting to become a deputy is to make sure that’s what you really want to do, use common sense and be dedicated. 

As a deputy sheriff probably one of the hardest things he had to do was to tell someone that they have had a loss in their family and a loved one die. 

Future plans and goals!!! Looking forward to spending time with family, friends, fishing and travel with long rides on his motorcycle. Just have to see what tomorrow brings, survival.