Former police chief dies in wreck

Published 11:03 am Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Veteran law enforcement officer and former Vicksburg Police Chief Jimmy Brooks was killed early this morning while riding a motorcycle in Madison. He was 60.

A motorcycle policeman for the city of Madison, Brooks reportedly was on his way to work at about 6:45 on his personal bike when it collided with a backhoe on U.S. 51 at Hoy Road, Ridgeland police said.

Madison County Coroner Alex Breeland said he pronounced Brooks dead at University Medical Center at 7:46 a.m.

Email newsletter signup

Sign up for The Vicksburg Post's free newsletters

Check which newsletters you would like to receive
  • Vicksburg News: Sent daily at 5 am
  • Vicksburg Sports: Sent daily at 10 am
  • Vicksburg Living: Sent on 15th of each month

Officials with the Madison Police Department were expected to make a statement about the accident later today.

“Jimmy had been a good friend of mine all of my life,” said Vicksburg police Lt. Bobby Stewart, who was hired in 1989 while Brooks was chief. “He was always happy and smiling. You could come to him for anything when he was chief. He was well-liked.”

Brooks was a graduate of St. Aloysius High School who studied criminal justice at Hinds Junior College and went to work as a patrolman at the Vicksburg Police Department in 1971. He worked his way up to the rank of captain in the traffic division and assistant chief before being named chief during the first Robert Walker administration, in 1989. He retired in February 1992 and was replaced by Vicksburg native and former New York policeman Charles Davenport.

After retirement, Brooks went to work for an environmental cleanup firm before returning to the City of Vicksburg for a short while and later taking the police position with the Madison Police Department.

Along the way, Brooks and his wife, Diana, and family moved to Clinton.

Warren County Deputy Leroy Williams worked with Brooks for about 20 years at the Vicksburg Police Department.

“It struck me pretty hard this morning,” Williams said. “He was a fair chief to work for. We got along. We were personal friends.”