PANOLA COUNTY, Miss. (WJTV) – A retired Mississippi Highway Patrol (MHP) trooper and sworn law enforcement officer with the Mississippi Department of Public Safety (DPS) died while assisting at a crash scene on Monday, September 4.
Officials said Michael Griffin, 62, of Ripley, came across a two-vehicle crash on Highway 6 in Panola County around 11:00 a.m. on Monday, September 4 while traveling to Jackson.
Before Griffin stopped at the scene, officials said a 2016 Ford F-150, driven by 21-year-old Benjamin Jackson, of Southaven, was traveling west on Highway 6 when it collided with a 2002 Lincoln LS, driven by 64-year-old Dewitt Cole, of Sardis.
After the crash, Griffin stopped to check on the driver of the Lincoln when the vehicle rolled on top of him. Griffin died at the scene.
“Mike Griffin was family to Elee and me, and I’m devastated by the news of the tragic accident that took his life this morning. But I’m not in the least bit surprised he was on the side of the road trying to help someone in need – because that was just the kind of person he was. All day and every day….a Marine, a State Trooper, a servant of God, and just an all-around good dude,” said Gov. Tate Reeves (R-Miss.).
*Mike Griffin was a dedicated public servant and law enforcement officer for many years. On top of that, he was a wonderful friend to me and many others,” said Mississippi DPS Commissioner Sean Tindell. “He will be deeply missed by all who knew him. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family during these difficult times.”
In 2021, Griffin retired from the MHP as an agent with the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation (MBI). He continued his service with the Mississippi DPS, working as a liaison with law enforcement agencies and other governmental departments across Mississippi.
He is survived by his wife, Edna, and daughter Olivia.
The crash remains under investigation by the MHP.