AG awards Independence County Outstanding Officer of the Year award to deputy


During the annual awards and recognition luncheon of the Arkansas Law Enforcement Summit in Benton yesterday, Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge announced the Independence County Outstanding Law Enforcement Officer of the Year award recipient.

The award went to Deputy Bobby Tate (pictured above, left, with Rutledge at the luncheon), 35, with the Independence County Sheriff’s Department.

Tate started later in life in law enforcement. He became a reserve officer in April of 2016, and one year later, when an opening came up, he was hired by Sheriff Shawn Stephens as a full-time deputy.

Tate graduated from Southside High School and was a mechanic when he decided to become a reserve officer in 2016.

“I noticed Officer Tate one day when we had a situation where a man was intent on doing harm to himself,” said Stephens. “Tate talked him down, and probably saved the man’s life. I would say Officer Tate is a pretty good communicator, and that is a good trait to have as a law enforcement officer.”

“It is my honor to recognize our law enforcement officers from around the state for their dedication to protecting Arkansans,” said Rutledge. “Every day these brave men and women leave their families without knowing if they will safely return home. Today’s recipients have gone above and beyond for all of us, and we are grateful for their dedication and sacrifice.”

Candidates for recognition can hold law enforcement positions at a college or university, municipal, county, state or federal level.

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Images via Independence County Sheriff’s Department Facebook page


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