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Former Marion County sheriff dies after battle with cancer

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Jack Cottey

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Oct. 21, 2014)– A former Marion County sheriff has died.

Jack Cottey, 75,  was sheriff from 1994 to 2002 after serving more than a decade in the Indiana House of Representatives.  He is credited with shepherding many public safety laws and establishing several nationally recognized crime-fighting programs.

Marion Co. Sheriff John Layton tells FOX59 that the veteran law man succumbed to his battle with cancer at a Carmel rehabilitation facility late Tuesday afternoon.

“A lot of what I learned about being a sheriff, I learned from that man,” said Sheriff Layton, “He always treated everybody fair.”

A native of Indianapolis, Cottey enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corp after graduating from Southport High School in 1957. Upon being honorably discharged, Cottey joined the Marion County Sheriff’s Department and later the Indianapolis Police Department, where he worked his way through the ranks from patrolman to deputy chief of detectives at the young age of 35. He retired from IPD in 1986, when he was selected by then-newly elected Sheriff Joe McAtee to serve as McAtee’s administrative officer.

Funeral services with Crown Hill Cemetery are pending. Donations may be made to the American Cancer Society.