Tommy Bryant still has a lot of sheriffing left to do

Erath County Sheriff Tommy Bryant


ERATH COUNTY (September 10, 2015) — For nearly 20 years Erath County Sheriff Tommy Bryant has served the county as sheriff, and with the announcement of his intent to run again in 2016, he is letting the community know he plans on continuing to do just that.

“Well, because I’ve still got a lot of sheriffin’ left to do,” Bryant said with a chuckle Wednesday afternoon when he sat down with The Flash Today. “We’ve just accomplished so much, and so many of those programs we’ve worked so hard on are still going strong and so am I.”

First elected in 1996, Bryant began service as Erath County Sheriff in January 1997, but has served the county as a law enforcement officer since August 1988. He and wife, Donnie, who is a teacher for Stephenville ISD, have a son, Thom Allen, who is a 2013 Stephenville HS graduate. Bryant has lived in Erath County since his family moved to Stephenville when he was in the fourth grade.

After graduation from Stephenville High School, Bryant went to police academy at Tarleton State University before going to work for the Stephenville Police Department. A little over half of his 10 years with Stephenville PD were spent as a motorcycle patrol officer and many still remember him as the tall PD officer on the motorcycle.

While in his tenure with the Erath County Sheriff’s Office, Bryant said he’s seen lots of awful crime, but it’s been more good than bad. But even in the worst of times, Bryant said law enforcement in Erath County and the residents come together to make the best of a bad situation or to solve a problem.

But the residents and officers aren’t the only ones who come together. Bryant cites one of his favorite things his office has accomplished is the cooperation between ECSO and other area law enforcement departments.

“We’ve worked so hard over the years to build great working relationships with all these area agencies and it’s more than paid off so many times,” he said. “The most recent, and newsworthy, example of that is the Eddie Ray Routh trial. We brought 10 agencies together for that trial. We could not have pulled that off without the help of everyone else, and that’s a credit to not only this department but the other agencies as well.”

Erath County Sheriff's Office
Erath County Sheriff’s Office

Bryant said another example of the cooperation between departments was the bust of a check forgery ring right here in Stephenville. An investigator with ECSO received a call from a local bank that a number of people were attempting to cash forged checks. Working closely with the Stephenville Police Department, ECSO was able to capture six members of a street gang out of Houston who were in town.

“The local PD and our office here have also work closely with Hood County, Palo Pinto County and so many more,” Bryant said. “It really is a testament to the dedication of these officers and the hard work we’ve all put in over the years together.”

But it isn’t just the cooperation Bryant is proud of.

“We’ve developed a lot of good programs here in Erath County. There is a program to help keep senior citizens aware and teaches them how to avoid violent crime, we have an inmate work program that has helped clean up and repair churches, schools, local parks and so much more,” he said. “And then there is the statewide law I helped get passed in 2007. That law now allows law enforcement to arrest and charge guardians and parents of children that have been exposed to manufacturing and use of methamphetamines in the home. I’m extremely proud of that, too.”

Bryant said he has been doing this a long time and he isn’t ready to do anything else just yet.

“We’ve been doing this for almost 20 years, we’ve saved the county a lot of money and we’ve made it a heck of a lot safer, too,” Bryant said. “I’m not ready to do anything else but this right now.”

Erath County Sheriff Tommy Bryant
Erath County Sheriff Tommy Bryant

And even with a couple challengers, Bryant feels confident going into the upcoming campaign and election.

“The people of Erath County are good folks and it’s been an honor to work with them and to serve them,” he said. “I’m proud to be a part of keeping the county and the county’s residents safe and I’m hoping they see fit to let me do it for another term.”

Bryant said he hopes anyone with any questions about his campaign or the Erath County Sheriff’s Office’s many programs will come by his office to chat.

“My door is always open here,” he concluded. “I hope anyone who reads this or hears about it and has any questions will come by and chat with me. We’ve done so much in 20 years that we don’t have time to list them all, but I’m proud of each one and would love to discuss them or answer any questions residents have. I’m here, come by, let’s talk!”

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