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Stafford County Sheriff's Office
Site



Public Safety Center
Ford T. Humphrey Building

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 189
Stafford, VA 22555

Physical Address:
1225 Courthouse Rd.
Stafford, VA 22554

Information:




Stafford Alert






 

The Office of the Sheriff can trace its beginnings to early England and to Anglo-Saxon, King Alfred the Great.  In the 9th century Alfred organized the country into “shires”, or counties.  The freemen of the shires banded together into a group of ten families called a “tything.”  These groups insured that any criminal would be delivered to the thane, or landowner.  The leaders of these groups were called the “tythingman.”  To complete the shire organization the tythings grouped themselves into 10 families or a “hundred.”  The tythingmen then elected a leader they called the “Reeve.”  William the Conquer changed the elected “Reeve” into an appointment of the King.

The Reeve became the King’s man in each shire; he enforced the laws, collected taxes, administered the courts and punished the guilty.  He replaced the Thane in responsibility and became known as the “Shire-Reeve” thus Sheriff.  The concept and term came across the Atlantic with the settlers of the New World.

The colonial sheriff was a complex and difficult character.  His power was enormous.  He was responsible for law enforcement functions by executing orders of the court, managing the jail and making arrests.  In addition, he was the county tax collector and treasurer, responsible for collecting all “quit rents, levies and fees.  He held elections for burgess, summoned grand and petite juries, administered oaths and presided at vestry elections.  As an agent of the Governor, he published orders and proclamations and called up the officers of the Militia.  When pirates were captured, he passed on the orders of the Governor to the officers of the Militia and the Navy.  Sheriffs derived their income by retaining a portion of the taxes, fines, fees and levies collected.

Following the appointment by Lord Baltimore of the first sheriff, the monthly court appointed most sheriffs.  In 1664 the parliament decreed that each county was allocated one sheriff’s position.  Thus in 1664 Stafford County became one of the first counties in Colonial Virginia to appoint a sheriff.  Since that time a continuous line of sheriffs have served the citizens of the County, including the names of Mason and Washington.

After the Civil War, the Office of the Sheriff underwent a revision and was restricted to Law Enforcement, Court Operations and Jail Operations only.

 

The Sheriffs of Stafford County, Virginia

1664 – Present

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1664  - 1665  Col. John Dodman   1771  - 1773 William Edrington
1665  - 1666  Maj. George Mason   1773  - 1776 Samuel Washington
1666  - 1667  Capt. John Alexander   1776  - 1777 Yelverton Payton
1667  - 1668  Richard Fossaker   1777  - 1779 Elijah Threlkeld
1668  - 1683  George Mason   1779  - 1780 Charles Carter, Jr.
1683  - 1685  Edward Thomason   1780  - 1781 Charles Carter
1685  - 1687  Samuel Hayward   1781  - 1784 Col. William Garrard
1687  - 1691  Malachy Peale   1784  - 1785 Mason Pilcher
1691  - 1695  Capt. George Mason II   1785  - 1787 Gerrard Banks
1695  - 1696  Thomas Owsley   1787  - 1789 Thomas Mountjoy
1696  - 1697  Martin Scarlet   1789  - 1791 William Hewitt
1697  - 1699  Thomas Owsley   1791  - 1794 Daniel Triplett
1699  - 1700  George Mason   1794  - 1795 Col William Phillips
1700  - 1701  Richard Fossaker   1795  - 1796 James Primm
1701  - 1702  John Waugh, Jr.   1796  - 1797 Henry Vowles
1702  - 1703  Charles Ellis   1797  - 1798 Daniel Triplett
1703  - 1705  Dade Massey   1798  - 1799 Hancock Eustace
1705  - 1706  George Mason   1799  - 1800 Elijah Nichols
1707  - 1709  Maj. Wm. Fitzhugh   1800  - 1801 John Moncure
1709  - 1711  George Anderson   1801  - 1802 James Primm
1711  - 1713  Joseph Sumner   1802  - 1805 Benjamin Ficklen
1713  - 1715  George Mason   1805  - 1806 Joseph Botts
1715  - 1716  James Jameson   1806  - 1818 Samuel Heath Peyton
1716  - 1717  Henry Fitzhugh   1818  - 1822 Hancock Eustace
1717  - 1719  John Washington   1822  - 1823 Alexander Morson
1719  - 1722  Thomas Hooper   1823  - 1824 Benjamin Tolson
1722  - 1724  French Mason   1824  - 1826 Thomas Hill
1724  - 1726  Townsend Dade   1826  - 1827 Benjamin Tolson
1726  - 1727  William Storke   1827  - 1830 George Banks
1727  - 1728  Anthony Thornton   1830  - 1833  Robert Howson Hooe
1728  - 1729  Maj. Dennis McCarty   1833  - 1834  William H. Fitzhugh
1729  - 1730  Abraham Farrow   1834  - 1843 Dr. Alexander Fitzhugh
1730  - 1731  Townsend Dade   1843  - 1844  Duff Green
1731  - 1732  Thomas Grigsby   1844  - 1846 Thomas Towson
1732  - 1734  John Washington   1846  - 1848  Samuel S. Brooke
1734  - 1735  Capt. Philip Alexander   1848  - 1850 Walker P. Conway
1735  - 1736  Capt. Chandler Fowke   1850  - 1852 John R. Fitzhugh
1736  - 1737  John Washington   1852  - 1854 Travers D. Moncure
1737  - 1739  Henry Washington   1854  - 1859 James Montieth
1739  - 1741  Capt. John Hooe   1859  - 1869 Elias A. W. Hore
1741  - 1743  Richard Foote   1869  - 1875 Patrick B. Dunn
1743  - 1745  Richard Bernard   1875  - 1889 Hugh Adie
1745  - 1746  Mottram Doniphan   1889  - 1901 Charles L. Kennedy
1746  - 1747 George Waller   1901  - 1909 Walter Wamsley
1747  - 1749 Peter Daniel   1909 – 1915  Richard Cassius Lee            
1749  - 1750 Benjamin Strother Montcure, Jr.   1915  - 1919  Clarence Newman Knight
1750  - 1751 James Waugh   1919  - 1947 William E. Curtis
1751  - 1757 Philip Alexander   1947  - 1955 Alaric Rideout  MacGregor
1757  - 1758 John Stuart   1955  - 1959 Bobbie F. Burton
1758  - 1760 Bailey Washington, Sr.    1959  - 1971 Alaric Rideout MacGregor
1760  - 1766 Samuel Selden   1971  - 1991 Richard L. Ashby
1766  - 1767 John Stuart   1991  - 1999 Ralph Williams
1767  - 1769 John Washington   1999 -  2016 Charles E. Jett
1769  - 1771 John Brown   2016 -  Present David P. Decatur, Jr.

 

Sheriff Hugh Adie Jr. 1875 - 1889
Shown in his CSA Uniform

 

    

   

       
Sheriff Newman Knight
1907-1910, 1915-1918

 Sheriff R.C.L. Moncure
1911-1914

Sheriff W.E. Curtis
1919-1947

 Sheriff B.F. Burton
1956-1959

   

 

 Sheriff A.R. MacGregor
1948-1955, 1960-1971

Sheriff R.L. Ashby
1972-1990

Sheriff R.M. Williams
1990-1999

Sheriff Charles E. Jett
2000-2016

           
Sheriff David P. Decatur, Jr.
2016 to Present
     

 


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