City of Falls Church Sheriff Stephen Bittle retired on Saturday after serving the City for 54 years.
Sworn in Saturday as his interim replacement was Metin “Matt” Cay, who had served as chief deputy in the department. The position will be subject to an election in November 2021.
Sheriff Bittle started as an officer in the City’s Police Department in August 1966.
He left the department in December 1992 and was appointed as interim Sheriff and was officially elected Sheriff in 1993, subsequently serving a total of 28 years in the position.
In February 2017, the Virginia House of Delegates honored Sheriff Bittle for what was at the time 50 years of service, lauding his “professionalism and service.”
It credited him with implementing a community-oriented policing strategy that has strived to build mutual respect between his deputies and members of the public.
Interim Sheriff Cay has over 20 years of law enforcement experience.
He started service with the City in February 2003 in the Sheriff’s Office, then joined the Police Department, and then rejoined the Sheriff’s Office as Chief Deputy in October 2016. Previous to that, he practiced law in Virginia.