In Memoriam

"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."  John 15:13



Sheriff Donnie Haralson began his law enforcement career in February 1977 as a Cordele Police Officer. He became Cordele's Chief of Police in 1985, was appointed interim sheriff of Crisp County by Governor Joe Frank Harris in 1987, and elected sheriff in 1988. He faithfully continued to serve the citizens of Crisp County until his untimely death after a very courageous battle with cancer in 2014.


Sheriff Haralson served on numerous committees on both the local and state level. He served as President of the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association and served on the board of directors for the GSA. He served on the Georgia Public Safety Board of Directors. He presided as chairman of the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council as well as chairman for the Peace Officer Standards and Training Council. In 1993 Haralson was elected by his peers as President of the Peace Officers Association of Georgia.


On the local level, Sheriff Haralson was president of the Crisp County Community Council and served on the United Way Board. He is a 1977 Graduate of the Abraham Baldwin Regional Police Academy and a 1987 graduate of the Georgia Sheriffs' Academy. Sheriff Haralson was a recipient of the Governor's Public Safety Award for his outstanding contributions to law enforcement in August of 2000.


During his tenure as sheriff, he was successful in helping procure inmate labor to build a multimillion dollar recreation facility in Crisp County at a tremendous cost savings to the citizens. He was instrumental in acquiring a regional youth detention center in Cordele, helping to provide jobs for many in the community. In addition to many other accomplishments, Sheriff Haralson was a proactive sheriff. Rather than responding to crime, Sheriff Haralson was geared to proactive law enforcement to prevent crime. He established many programs to teach personal safety; women's firearms familiarization classes; drug prevention programs; Junior deputy program; GED program for inmates; church services for inmates and numerous other programs that enhanced the quality of life for the citizens of Crisp County.


Sheriff Donnie Haralson also served as Crisp County's Emergency Management Director. During the flood of 1994, Haralson received recognition for leading his community during the tragedy with only minor injuries and no loss of life. He was chosen as the recipient of the Cordele Crisp County Chamber of Commerce "This is Your Life" Award in appreciation for his service to Crisp County and its citizens. He was awarded the Melvin Jones Foundation Award from Lions International.


Because of his determination to protect and serve, Haralson was nominated and chosen as the State of Georgia 2010 Sheriff of the Year. Donnie’s dedication and distinguished law enforcement career brought him to be the longest sitting sheriff in the history of Crisp County.  He was a member of First Baptist Church.


Memorials:  Donations can be made online at, mailing to Memorial/Tribute Fund, Georgia Sheriff's Association, Georgia Sheriffs' Youth Homes, P O Box 1000, Stockbridge, GA 30281-8000.



Sheriff Donnie Haralson


LT Michael Sangster

LT Michael Sangster passed away July 5, 2012 after a hard-fought battle with cancer. Michael began his career in Law Enforcement as an Explorer in 1994.  He joined the Crisp County Sheriff's Office in 1998 as a Detention Officer and was promoted to the Patrol Division in 1999. In 2001 Michael joined the Georgia State Patrol and worked at the Governor's Mansion until 2002. In February of that year, he came back to the Crisp County Sheriff's Office and began working with the Patrol Division. Later that same year he joined the Tri-County Special Response Team. During his time with the Sheriff's Office, Michael worked with the Mid-South Narcotics Task Force, Criminal Apprehension Team, and the Drug Interdiction Team. In 2007, he successfully completed and was recognized as a Law Enforcement Instructor for the State of Georgia. Michael specialized in Driver Training, Speed Detection, Firearms, Defensive Tactics and was a Field Training Officer. He became a course coordinator for Parents Reducing Injuries and Driver Error (P.R.I.D.E.) and made a positive impact on many of our youth regarding the dangers of driving.  Michael taught Law Enforcement classes for South Georgia Technical College and various agencies across Georgia. During his career, Michael amassed 2,910 hours of training. He was a member of the Christian Faith.

 Memorials:  LT Michael Sangster LEA Scholarship Fund, South Georgia Technical College Foundation, P.O. Box 6102, Americus, GA 31709




  Former Crisp County Corporal and Mid-South Narcotics Task Force Agent Jason McKinney, age 40, passed away October 24, 2014, after a long, courageous battle with cancer.  Jason was so proud Jesus Christ was his Lord and Savior.  His personality was contagious. Jason loved his family and enjoyed spending time with them. He enjoyed hunting and fishing, playing the guitar, and singing. Jason is survived by his wife and two children.  Please keep the McKinney family in your prayers.

Memorials:  c/o Erin McKinney, 502 Engram St., Montezuma, GA 31063


Corporal Jason McKinney