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HomeLocal & Regional NewsJohn McGarva Named Lassen County's New Sheriff-Coroner

John McGarva Named Lassen County’s New Sheriff-Coroner

Sheriff John McGarva and wife Mandy – photo provided

By Jeremy Couso

On February 13th, the Lassen County Board of Supervisors appointed a new Sheriff-Coroner for the county, announcing that long-time local law enforcement officer John McGarva would serve out the four years remaining on the term of Sheriff Dean Growdon, who retired in December. Prior to the appointment McGarva was a Captain and Custody Division Commander for the LCSO.

The Supervisors chose McGarva from several top-quality candidates within the agency.

He began his law enforcement career at the age of sixteen, when he joined the LCSO’s Explorer Program, and was hired full-time as a Correctional Deputy in 2001.

While working as a line officer, and as a transportation officer, he put himself through the Butte-Glenn Law Enforcement Academy in 2004.

Hired as a Deputy Sheriff in 2005, McGarva worked patrol, including assignments in Westwood and Headquarters.

He became a Detective in 2010 and worked assignments in everything from Welfare Fraud to Homicide.

McGarva was selected as the Officer of the Year in 2011 while assigned to Investigations and promoted to Sergeant in 2013, working assignments in Patrol, Investigations, Custody and Administration.

In 2019 he was promoted to Lieutenant and assigned to the Custody Division where he received a promotion to Captain in 2020 and worked as the Custody Division Commander.

Here in Lassen County our Sheriff is responsible for a wide range of public safety services; law enforcement throughout the county, operating the county’s jail on Cady Lane and managing the area’s 911 dispatch center are all part of the Sheriff’s purview.

The Sheriff’s office also provides search and rescue, boat safety and services for the courts.

“It is very daunting to become the Sheriff,” McGarva says.

“The responsibility of the office itself is immense. However, I do feel up to the challenge. All of my previous experience has prepared me for the office.”

McGarva is enthusiastic about meeting with the community and learning what we want from our new Sheriff.

“I am looking forward to working with my community partners to make Lassen County safe.”

He has his work cut out for himself, as he navigates the next four years.

“The state has already declared a budget shortfall equaling billions,” explains McGarva. “This will, of course, trickle down to each county. This will mean some hard financial decisions in the future.”

He added that recruiting and retention is always a concern in law enforcement, and something he will focus on in the coming years.

Long-term plans? McGarva confirms for us that he will be running for the Sheriff-Coroner position when this term expires in 2028.

McGarva said that his wife Mandy and their two girls are excited about his new position.

“I am really lucky to have such a great support team at home,” he says.

McGarva and wife Mandy at a LCSO staff recognition ceremony in 2020
Jeremy Couso
Jeremy Couso Publisher/Editor
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