Former CPD lieutenant sworn into Hamilton County Sheriff's Office as chief deputy

Family and friends joined former CPD lieutenant Austin Garrett Monday as he was officially sworn in as chief deputy of the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office. (Image: Hamilton County Sheriff's Office)

The man who could become Hamilton County's next sheriff was sworn in as chief deputy Monday, after an emotional send-off from his own daughter.

After a final sign-off as a lieutenant with the Chattanooga Police Department with his daughter, family and friends gathered around Austin Garrett this morning as he officially joined the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office.

As chief deputy, Garrett now holds the second highest ranking position in the HCSO. He assumed this role after 25 years of service with CPD.

Sheriff Jim Hammond says he hopes Garrett will eventually take his place. Before Monday's ceremony, Sheriff Hammond said he was planning on this term being his last.

Hammond spoke highly of Garrett, saying he could see him as the next sheriff at some point.

Garrett said he is honored, and excited to step into this new leadership position in the same area he has served for a quarter of a century.

“I am proud to continue serving the Hamilton County community,” Garrett said, adding: “I am humbled Sheriff Hammond has appointed me to serve in this leadership role alongside the men and women of the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office."

Building on an academic background in criminal justice from Bethel University, Garrett also recently graduated from the FBI National Academy.

In this new role, Garrett will step into leadership as overseer of the entire HCSO command staff.

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