Danny Crouse , a lieutenant with the Salem Police Department, has qualified to run as an independent for Botetourt County sheriff and will appear on the ballot Nov. 5.

Crouse joined the Salem Police Department in January 2008 at the age of 40. Before that, he worked in his family’s trucking business, Houston Motor Express, and ran a hotel his father owned in Florida.

In Salem, he worked as a patrol officer until 2012 when he was transferred to the detective division. That same year, he was named Salem’s police officer of the year after saving a woman who was threatening to jump off the Virginia 419 bridge over Interstate 81. He also received the Mothers Against Drunk Driving Award, according to the news release announcing his campaign for sheriff.

Crouse currently lives in Botetourt County with his two daughters, who both attended Lord Botetourt High School. He was born in California but was raised just outside of Salem since he was a teenager. He graduated in 1986 from Glenvar High School in Roanoke County before attending Virginia Western Community College, Radford University and Averett University, where he earned a master’s degree in business administration.

He also graduated from the University of Virginia Command College, a 10-week criminal justice course run with the state police.

“I will work side-by-side with the men and women of the Sheriff’s Office to anticipate Botetourt County’s continued growth, while meeting the needs and wants of our residents, families and businesses,” Crouse said in the news release. “Change is inevitable, but it’s how we react to it as a community that truly matters.”

Crouse worked in white collar crime investigations, departmental recruiting and background checks. He also supervised crime analysis, general investigations, narcotics and records management divisions.

Crouse is the second independent candidate who has filed to run for sheriff. William Stowell, who owns an ATM business in the county, has filed some paperwork but is not yet a certified candidate, Director of Elections Traci Clark said.

Three other men — Jeff Stritesky, Matt Ward and Mike Vineyard — are running for the Republican nomination. Stritesky is a lieutenant and Ward is a master deputy in the Botetourt County Sheriff’s Office. Vineyard is a retired Roanoke police officer.

Republicans will determine their candidate in a state-run primary June 11.

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Alison Graham covers Botetourt and Rockbridge counties and Lexington. She’s originally from Indianapolis and a graduate of Indiana University.

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