Sheriff Rick Staly Unveils Memorial in Honor of Sheriff Perry Hall for National Correctional Officers & Employees Week

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On Wednesday, May 8, Sheriff Rick Staly unveiled a memorial in honor of Sheriff Perry Hall outside the Sheriff Perry Hall Inmate Detention Facility. The jail, previously named the Flagler County Inmate Facility, was renamed after Sheriff Hall in 2018. The new memorial, consisting of a memorial garden accompanied by a historical marker describing the sheriff’s life and death, commemorates Sheriff Hall’s legacy and sacrifice serving his community. Sheriff Hall was the first law enforcement officer in Flagler County to be killed in the line of duty.

Sheriff Hall served as the second Sheriff of Flagler County until his death in August 1927. Sheriff Hall was conducting a prohibition raid when he was struck on the head with a glass bottle, fracturing his skull and knocking him unconscious. At the time, there was no hospital in Flagler County, so Sheriff Hall was rushed to a hospital in St. Augustine, but never regained consciousness and died on August 21, 1927.

Following the sheriff’s death, a posse of over 200 men was assembled to search for his killer. The suspect, a man named Jim Smith, fled to Georgia, and changed his name to avoid capture, vowing not to be taken alive. Twenty-one days after the murder of Sheriff Hall, a group of armed men tracked Smith to Tift County, Georgia. Smith tried to flee out a back door but was shot and killed during the effort to apprehend him.

“I’m proud and honored to unveil this memorial to recognize Sheriff Hall,” said Sheriff Staly. “In addition to the jail being named in his honor, this memorial serves as a permanent reminder of his sacrifice and the dangers of serving and enforcing the laws in our community.”

Florida State Senator Tom Wright, Flagler County Commissioner Greg Hansen, and Palm Coast Mayor David Alfin also offered remarks during the event.

Both the naming of the jail in 2018 and Wednesday’s memorial unveiling occurred during National Correctional Officers and Employees Week. In 1987, President Ronald Reagan established the first full week in May as National Correctional Officers Week. In 1996, Congress expanded the week to include all correctional employees.

“During National Correctional Officers and Employees week, we recognize and thank all of our detention deputies and employees who work in our jail,” Sheriff Staly added. “Their hard work and dedication are a key reason why the Sheriff Perry Hall Inmate Detention Facility is an award-winning jail and recognized as one of the top facilities in the country.

By Flagler County Buzz

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