Sheriff Robert Arnold (center) congratulates Capt. Egon Grissom (left) and Deputy A.J. Ross (right) after they received awards on Dec. 13, 2013, from the Governor\\\'s Highway Safety Office in Nashville, Tenn. (Photo submitted)
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- Rutherford County Sheriff’s Deputy A.J. Ross earned honors as Deputy of the Year from the Governor’s Highway Safety Office last week.
Ross conducts advanced roadside impaired driver enforcement training for the office.
“He is Deputy of the Year because he’s passionate about teaching, driving many miles, and doing it without big pay,” said Tony Burnett, who serves as a Governor's Highway Safety Office law enforcement liaison for Middle Tennessee.
Also, Capt. Egon Grissom received recognition for his partnership with office and the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office.
Sheriff’s Lt. Joe Gray, who nominated Ross, said he is a key player in the Traffic Unit and shares his skills with deputies and other law enforcement officers in Tennessee and the U.S.
He has taught numerous classes for the Sheriff’s Office and for the Governor’s Highway Safety Office in the field of DUI detection, standardized field sobriety testing and drug impairment detection.
“Deputy Ross is this department’s only (drug recognition expert), and as such, has performed numerous drug evaluations for this department and for surrounding agencies,” Gray said. “His knowledge and skills in this area also landed him an invitation to teach at the Tennessee Prosecutor’s Conference, whose members are the district attorney generals and their assistants from the various judicial districts across the state.”
He is also a frequent guest instructor at the Tennessee Law Enforcement Academy, where he teaches standardized field sobriety testing to new law enforcement officers from across the state.
“Deputy Ross has performed brilliantly in his job as a traffic officer also,” Gray said. “His rate of conviction is near 100 percent, and he has made the second highest number of arrests for impaired driving at this department for the past year. Deputy Ross also never hesitates to assist other deputies or officers with other agencies with their arrests and stops.”
He volunteers his time on numerous occasions to speak on traffic and DUI related matters. Some of the groups he has addressed include the Sheriff’s Citizen Academy, Stones River Chapter of Concerned Bikers of Tennessee, Boy Scouts of America Explorers Post and several other groups and organizations.