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Santa Clarita sheriff's station marks 40 years, honors fallen hero

June 29, 2012 |  1:33 pm

Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials joined Santa Clarita city representatives and other dignitaries this week to observe the law enforcement agency’s 40 years of service to the Santa Clarita Valley region and to rededicate a memorial garden to include a newly discovered fallen hero.

More than 200 invited guests attended Thursday’s celebration to watch as a plaque honoring Deputy Constable J. Edward Brown was added to the station’s memorial wall, according to Deputy Joshua Dubin of the Santa Clarita sheriff’s station.

Brown, a Missouri native, was the first law enforcement officer killed in the line of duty in Santa Clarita on Sept. 14, 1924, sheriff’s officials said. He was slain in a fierce gunfight in Saugus. The local Signal newspaper of the day published an account of Brown’s demise. News of the deputy’s valor surfaced when one of Brown’s friends found clippings detailing the event in a scrapbook, sheriff’s officials said.

The plaque honoring Brown was placed next to similar commemorative tablets paying tribute to three other lawmen: Deputy Arthur Pelino, killed March 19, 1978; Deputy Hagop Kuredjian, Aug. 31, 2001; and Deputy Randy Hamson, Oct. 24, 2008.

The Santa Clarita Valley sheriff’s station provides law enforcement services for the 593 square miles of unincorporated Los Angeles County in the Santa Clarita Valley and 55 square miles of the city of Santa Clarita, according to information provided by sheriff’s officials. The combined population of both areas totals around 275,000. The city contracts the sheriff’s service for more than $20.5 million a year.

According to information provided by the sheriff’s department, the current Santa Clarita station opened its doors in 1972. Today, it has more than 200 sworn staff members and close to 50 professional staff. It is also home to more than 200 volunteers, including patrol reserve deputies and mounted posse members, official said.


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-- Ann M. Simmons in Santa Clarita

Photo: Santa Clarita sheriff's deputies pay tribute at the station's memorial wall honoring fallen officers. Credit: Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department