Rio Blanco sheriff recovering from stabbing

Rio Blanco County Sheriff Si Woodruff is expected to fully recover after being stabbed on duty Thursday.

The sheriff’s office said on its Facebook page that a man was taken into custody after assaulting Woodruff in the parking lot of Pioneers Hospital in Meeker.

“Police Chief Robert Hervey was also involved in the attempted arrest but was not harmed,” the statement said.

The man was arrested and taken to the Rio Blanco County Jail. His name was not immediately released.

Woodruff initially was admitted to Pioneers Hospital, but then airlifted to St. Mary’s Medical Center in Grand Junction.

Garfield County Sheriff Lou Vallario said he visited Woodruff at St. Mary’s.

“He was conscious and laughing. The good news is that it looks like he’s going to be fully recovered,” Vallario said.

He said Woodruff was stabbed in the abdomen, but fortunately no vital organs were damaged.

Vallario said it’s possible Woodruff might be released today or tomorrow, and doctors were indicating he might fully recover in about three weeks.

Rio Blanco County’s longtime sheriff and former Meeker police chief is retiring in January. Anthony Mazzola, who worked as an investigator for the 9th Judicial District Attorney’s Office, is the sheriff-elect after winning a Republican primary.


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