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Deputy Sheriff Robert William Varner, Jr. | Navajo County Sheriff's Office, Arizona Navajo County Sheriff's Office, Arizona

Deputy Sheriff

Robert William Varner, Jr.

Navajo County Sheriff's Office, Arizona

End of Watch: Monday, January 2, 1989

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 51

Tour: 26 years

Badge # 48

Military veteran

Cause: Gunfire

Incident Date: 12/31/1988

Weapon: Handgun; Mac-11

Offender: Committed suicide

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Deputy Robert Varner was shot and killed after stopping a stolen vehicle with stolen tags on I-40.

When the vehicle stopped, the passenger exited the car and opened fire with a sub-machine gun, striking Deputy Varner several times.

The suspects split up and the shooter committed suicide before officers could apprehend him. The driver of the vehicle was apprehended and sentenced to thirteen years.

Deputy Varner had been a member of the Navajo County Sheriff's Department for one year, after retiring from the Arizona Department of Public Safety, with 24 years of service. He is survived by his wife, son, and two daughters.

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Most Recent Reflection

I was just talking to a friend from TUCSON PD,,Offier Nunez..telling him about you and the incident that took your life. You were a special friend to me. I knew you at Navajo As when you were with AHP.,used to do ride alongs with you on I40., then you and I worked together at the helium plant.,we had some good laughs on,overnite fishing trips. I was very saddened to hear of your death. It still brings tears in,my eyes.,you were great friend,

Sgt Don Winkler
xCapitol Guard and Patrol..your friend always
January 20, 2017


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