Public Safety

  • Local attacks renew debate over pit bulls

    Recent pit bull attacks in the Twin Counties and elsewhere have sparked a fierce debate about whether the fault lies in the dogs’ owners or in a genetic predisposition to violence.
    In January, 15-month-old Payton Lyrik Sawyers died after she was attacked by a dog while in the care of babysitters. The dog’s owner said he was awakened by screams to find his pit bull/rottweiler mix, E.J., with the child’s head in its mouth. The owner was bitten in the face while trying to intervene in the attack.

  • Sheriff’s Office moves to new building


    INDEPENDENCE – The Grayson County Sheriff’s Office moved to their new location at the Grayson County Grubb Public Safety Building in Independence last Wednesday.

  • Victim in double shooting dies; suspect caught

    Staff Reports

    A man wanted for shooting two people in Grayson County on Sunday morning was caught later that night in North Carolina, after wrecking his car during a police chase.

    One of the shooting victims, Karen Cates, died.

  • Double shooting in Fairview; suspect at large


    The Grayson County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a double shooting in Fairview, which occurred Sunday morning.

    Authorities have not released the names of anyone shot, or their conditions.

    Law enforcement has identified the shooting suspect as Greyling Dwayne “Beany” Davis, 52, of Fries Road in Galax.

  • Threat under investigation at Grayson Courthouse

    The Grayson County Sheriff’s Office, Virginia State Police, and specialist investigators responded to the Grayson County Courthouse on Wednesday, when the Circuit Court Clerk’s office received a threatening letter that also contained an unknown substance.
    According to a press release from Sheriff Richard Vaughan, members of the Grayson County Sheriff’s Office responded to the Grayson County Courthouse at 10:40 a.m. Wednesday.

  • Sheriff’s Office releases annual report

    INDEPENDENCE — The Grayson County Sheriff’s Office recently released their 2015 annual report.
    According to the report, shared with The Declaration by Sheriff Richard Vaughan, deputies responded to 7,258 calls for service, served 5,822 warrants (1,080 criminal and 4,742 civil), and recorded 94 felony charges. Investigators placed 98 charges on drug offenders, and recorded a total of 39 larceny and burglary charges.

  • New Sheriff’s Office could open in March

    By Larry Chambers

    INDEPENDENCE – Renovations are continuing at the Grayson County Grubb Public Safety Building in Independence and if everything goes as planned, it could open on March 16.
    The Grayson County Economic Development Authority (EDA), at the direction of the Board of Supervisors, purchased the building in December to relocate and house the sheriff’s department and dispatch.

  • VDOT to replace stoplights

    HILLSVILLE – The Virginia Department of Transportation began installing safety improvements to traffic signals in the area the week of Feb. 1 and will continue installation over the next six months.

  • Fries Fire Department receives grant for smoke detectors

    FRIES — Fries Volunteer Fire and Rescue recently received a grant from the Firefighters Charitable Foundation, a nationwide foundation that assists fire victims and volunteer fire department, for the purchase and installation of free smoke detectors in their coverage area.

  • Valentine's Day wreck totals vehicle



    BAYWOOD — A single vehicle wreck in the westbound lane of Grayson Parkway near the Baywood Market & Deli on Sunday at about 2:45 p.m. left a driver and passenger with unknown injuries, according to Virginia State Trooper J.A. Vaughan.

    George Burkett, 79, of Speedwell, was driving a 2006 GMC pickup truck, with his wife as passenger, when the crash occurred.