SWEETWATER COUNTY — Sweetwater County law enforcement recently honored David Thompson, who retired on May 14, 2019, after decades of law enforcement and military service.

Thompson was born in Watertown, New York, the son of a retired New York State trooper. His family came to Wyoming in 1979. Thompson graduated from Rock Springs High School in 1984.

In 1986, Thompson enlisted in the Marine Corps. He served as an infantryman during Operation Desert Storm in 1990 and was promoted to sergeant at Camp Fuji, Japan, in 1991. After his time with the Corps, in 1994, Thompson enlisted in the Wyoming National Guard and served as a sergeant until May 2000.

Thompson began his law enforcement career as a Rock Springs police officer in October 1994. After several years with RSPD, he transferred to the Sheriff’s Office before returning to the police department before going back to the Sheriff’s Office.

Thompson served with Rock Springs Police Department for nearly 17 years and Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office for eight years. During his career, Thompson worked in patrol, investigations and administration and was involved with numerous special assignments including as an off-field training officer, firearms instructor and special weapons and tactics operator.


Thompson was honored on May 17 at a private retirement party organized by his family and attended by his friends, co-workers and first responders from agencies across Sweetwater County. During the party, Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Joe Tomich surprised Thompson with a custom-made shadow box containing some of the badges, patches, collar brass and other police paraphernalia Thompson has collected and earned over his career.

In a letter to Thompson congratulating him on his retirement, Sheriff John Grossnickle labeled Thompson a “true American hero” and “the epitome of a law enforcement officer.”

“You have been through a journey that brings with it the best and the worst in people. You have witnessed life and death,” Grossnickle said. “You have masked your emotions to survive the events commonplace to this career. You have fought through administrations that didn’t believe in your ideas. You have sacrificed more than most people will ever realize or understand. Yet, you continued to proudly display the uniform, put on your duty belt, and call on duty to serve the citizens of Sweetwater County with professionalism and integrity.

“I want to thank your family for sharing their husband and father, for standing tall in the shadows of the unknown and for all of the sacrifice they have endured. You have all become a part of our family. And, thank you, Dave, from the bottom of our hearts. You will always be considered our brother.”

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