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History

Mobile County Sheriff’s Office—Since 1812

Long before Alabama became a state or the City of Mobile was incorporated, Mobile County has been protected by its Sheriff’s Office. When Mobile County was formed in 1812 as part of the Alabama Territory, Theodore Brightwell became the first sheriff. Since then, a total of 36 men have served as Sheriff. Many of the earlier leaders’ names seen in the timeline below are associated with streets and communities in Mobile County today.

As the county has grown over nearly two centuries of service by the Sheriff’s Office, the needs of law enforcement have changed. Today’s Mobile County Sheriff’s Office places its emphasis not on lethal weapons but the smart crime-fighting strategies and technologies needed to meet tomorrow’s challenges.

Sheriff Period
Sam Cochran 2006 – present
Jack Tillman 1995 – 2006
Tom Purvis 1975 – 1995
Ray Bridges 1954 – 1975
William H. Holcombe 1938 – 1954
Robert L. Holcombe 1934 – 1938
William H. Holcombe, Jr 1930 – 1934
Pat Byrne 1926 – 1930
Leon Schwarz 1924 – 1926
Paul G. Cazales 1922 – 1924
William H. Holcombe 1914 – 1922
Thomas T. Palmer 1910 – 1914
John S. Drago 1909 – 1910
Frank Cazales, Sr 1906 – 1909
John F. Powers 1900 – 1906