Tipton County, family mourn loss of deputy

Jacob Calvin killed in overnight crash

TIPTON COUNTY - The Tipton County Sheriff's Office was mourning one of its own Sunday after a deputy was killed in an overnight crash.

State police confirmed that Deputy Jacob Calvin, 31, of Kempton, was killed at roughly 10 p.m. Saturday while responding to an emergency call.

Investigators said Calvin was driving his 2011 Chevrolet Impala police car north on Tipton County Road 300 West near C.R. 300 South. He was speeding with his car's emergency lights and siren activated on his way to a crash near State Road 28 and C.R. 500 West.

For an unknown reason, the car veered off the road before rolling several times. Calvin was ejected from the car and he was taken to IU Tipton Hospital where he later died. Calvin was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash, police confirmed. 

"On a rural road, it could have been anything from a deer running out in front of him, or another animal, or maybe just inattention on the driver's part," said Indiana State Police Sgt. Tony Slocum. "Unfortunately, that may be the unanswered question we have."

Calvin had worked for the Tipton County Sheriff's Office for more than two years. His family says he saw the position as a way to make a positive impact on the young people in his community.

"I'm really proud of him. Our whole family is proud of him," said Dan Calvin, Jacob's father.

Deputy Calvin spent six years as a sergeant in the Air Force and served one tour in Iraq before returning home to Central Indiana.

At the sheriff's office, Calvin's father says he was training to be a part of the drug task force.

"He was there to help the community and teach the kids a lesson that, 'I'm not the bad guy. I'm here to help you,'" Dan Calvin said.

He also dreamed of opening a truck repair shop with his brother Luke.

"It wasn't odd for him to call and say, 'I've got this semi apart. I don't see what's wrong with it. Come look and I'll buy you dinner,'" said Luke Calvin.

Calvin's brother says he always made time for family: visiting his nephews often, calling daily and spending countless hours helping his grandfather on the farm.

"He was always there," Luke said. "It didn't matter what it was."

And he always had a plan – including one in the works with girlfriend Sammi Hawkins.

"We went ring shopping two days before," Hawkins said. "I was planning on spending the rest of my life with him."

On Sunday evening, the flag flew at half-staff outside the Tipton County Sheriff's Office, and a squad car draped in black sat on the lawn.

Calvin's family says they want to thank the community, friends and all of the fellow veterans who have reached out during this difficult time. They also extended their thanks to two women who stayed with Calvin at the scene of the crash before paramedics arrived.

Calvin is the third member of the Tipton County Sheriff's Office to die in sudden or tragic circumstances in the last eight years.

In July of 2006, Jail Commander Matt Thompson was hit and killed while riding his motorcycle, and in April of 2011, Deputy Denny Pearson was electrocuted while making repairs to his home.

The cause of the crash remains under investigation.

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