Wythe County deputy sheriff receives U.S. Congressional Badge of Bravery

It is an honor only given to law enforcement who’ve done exceptional acts while in the line of duty.
Published: Apr. 6, 2021 at 5:37 PM EDT
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WYTHE COUNTY, Va. (WDBJ) - Sheriff Deputy Jacob Goins was wounded in a November 2018 shooting during the search for an armed suspect.

Tuesday, he was honored for his heroic actions that day with the U.S. Congressional Badge of Bravery. Congressman Morgan Griffith presented the surprise and award to him at the Wythe County Administration building.

“I don’t consider myself a hero; I am just doing my job,” said Sheriff Deputy Jacob Goins.

Two years ago, Sheriff Deputy Goins and a Virginia State Trooper responded to an armed robbery that turned into a shooting.

“I didn’t expect what happened that night, but it did,” said Goins.

Wythe County Sheriff’s Deputy Jacob Goins was on patrol when he received a call about an armed robbery that had just taken place at a Comfort Inn off exit 80. When he arrived, the hotel clerk informed him that a man had robbed her at gunpoint. Deputy Goins and the Virginia State trooper went into a nearby Greyhound Bus Station to search for the man and found him.

In a press release from Congressman Griffith’s office, they describe in detail what happened that night.

“Seeing the outline of a gun on the suspect’s hip, Deputy Goins drew his sidearm and instructed the suspect to put his hands against the wall. The suspect started to comply, putting one hand on the wall, then turned toward Deputy Goins with the other hand still inside his pocket and fired two rounds at Deputy Goins and the state trooper, then attempted to flee.

As Deputy Goins pursued the suspect out of the bus station, he was struck in the leg by the suspect’s gunfire and fell down several times. The trooper helped drag Deputy Goins to a pickup truck parked in front of the station. The suspect fired several more shots into the bus station. While lying on the ground behind the pickup truck, Deputy Goins was able to steady himself and return fire, finally striking and killing the suspect.”

“Jacob survived. And nobody in the community other than the bad guy - and he wasn’t, he wasn’t a resident - nobody else got hurt,” said Wythe County Sheriff Keith Dunagan.

Goins was hospitalized for many months and had a long road to recovery.

“And at one time, we weren’t sure that he was ever going to get to come back,” said Dunagan.

But now, he is back in action.

“Because of his training and his bravery, and it all worked out,” said 9th District Congressman Morgan Griffith.

“I’m very honored,” said Goins.

Goins has been with the sheriff’s office for six years and credits the training he received for his swift thinking that night.

“All the family love I’ve been getting, support, keeps me going,” Goins told WDBJ7.

“I’m very proud and honored to be able to say, a job well done. On behalf of the United States,” said Congressman Griffith.

Goins is now looking toward the future to continue to protect his community and growing family.

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