Bartow County Sheriff’s Office authorities remember one of their own today—a brother law enforcement officer who made the ultimate sacrifice on this day in 1970.
Special Deputy Samuel Boyd Simpson was 51 years old and worked on the Sheriff’s Rescue Unit. He was not a full-time deputy and usually rode with regular deputies on weekends to help with calls for service.
Aug. 29, 1970, Deputy Simpson went to work about 6 p.m. and just before midnight he teamed up with deputies Jimmy Morris and Lewis Holloway to serve a warrant for "drunk and disorderly" on Charles Edward Cromer at a residence on Fairview Street near Atco off Cassville Road.
As the three attempted to arrest Cromer, he fired upon them, striking Deputy Simpson in the chest and Deputy Morris in the head. Deputy Holloway was able to disarm Cromer and make the arrest.
Deputy Morris was taken to Kennestone Hospital for treatment and would later return to work as an investigator in 1971. Deputy Simpson died from the injury and on Monday, Aug. 31, 1970, he was laid to rest.
It has been reported that there were a thousand in attendance, including law enforcement officers from near and far.
Cromer was arrested at the scene and later found guilty of the murder. He served time in prison and was released, then died in 2009 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
In 1970, Bartow County had about eight full-time deputy sheriffs and five to ten special deputies, who worked in a part-time capacity. The sheriff during this incident was Jim Wheeler.
Deputy Simpson was born in 1919 and was married with three children at the time of his death.
"It is an honor to be able to share this story with the citizens of Bartow County," Sheriff Clark Millsap said. "Boyd Simpson should be remembered as a hero who gave his life serving and protecting us."
This story serves to honor and give respect to Deputy Simpson’s family for their great loss on this day 42 years ago.
Millsap said plans for a permanent remembrance of Deputy Simpson are in the works.