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Brady Osceola Latchford continues family legacy in law enforcement

HOLLYWOOD — Brady Osceola Latchford said he’s known for many years what he wanted to do after college. Newly graduated, he’s doing it – entering the law enforcement tradition on his father’s side of the family.

Latchford’s father is William Latchford, the executive director of Public Safety for the Seminole Tribe and previously its police chief. He’s been in law enforcement for 28 years.

But the family legacy extends 95 years in all to grandfather Al Latchford, who worked for the New York State Police and retired as a police chief for the city of Port Richey, Florida, to great-grandfather George Latchford who worked for the New York City Police Department.

“Brady has a huge heart and a humble passion for helping others to maximize their individual safety and ability,” William Latchford said. “He strives to make everyone’s life better in every aspect. Regardless of what community he is working in – he will surely make the community a better place to live, work and play.”

2021 Florida State University graduate Brady Osceola Latchford.

Latchford graduated April 23 from Florida State University with a degree in criminology. He recently completed an internship in the tribe’s Public Safety departments and in August he’ll enter a six-month long police academy in Pensacola. After that he’ll start field training at the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office where he’ll launch his career as a deputy sheriff.

“I had the idea of law enforcement in the back of my head for most of my life. The aspect of trying to help people, show guidance, and be a mentor out there for others,” Latchford said. “Seeing my dad be a police officer and having the positions my grandfather and great-grandfather did – it was kind of a no-brainer for me.”

He said his parents never pressured him to choose law enforcement – something he appreciated.

“It was always whatever decision I make, they’re supportive,” he said.

With the help of his father, Latchford got into contact with Santa Rosa Sheriff Bob Johnson and went to the office in Milton to meet him and do a ride along to get a feel for the place and the people. The panhandle county with Pensacola at its edge has about 180,000 people. Latchford is excited about living in the more rural area as he enjoys being outdoors in nature and fishing.

“Brady came out one day and we talked for about an hour,” Johnson, who went to the FBI Academy with William Latchford, said. “He’s a really great kid – focused and sharp; the kind of guy you’d like to have in a patrol car with you.”

Latchford began the job application process after his visit.

“Usually a 21-year-old kid doesn’t know what they want to do,” Johnson said. “He knew exactly what he wanted.”

Tribal support

Latchford grew up in Pembroke Pines and went to the NSU University School in Davie. He spent time in Hollywood, too – most of his mother’s immediate family lives on the reservation. There are his grandparents Jimmy and Marie Osceola and uncles Jimmy Jr., Kevin and Matthew. There’s also aunt Tammy.

“It’s a great feeling to watch our son set goals and to watch how hard he works to accomplish them,” mother Amy Osceola Latchford said. “We are excited to follow his journey into law enforcement and see what the future brings. We are so proud of him.”

Latchford is the oldest of four boys and two girls.

Although he hasn’t lived on the reservation, Latchford said he attended tribal events and the annual Tribal Fair and Pow Wow over the years. One of the biggest tribal connections he had was the eight years he spent in the Police Explorers program – designed to excite youth about law enforcement careers.

“It helped me with the decision of going into law enforcement,” Latchford said. “Having that opportunity and my schooling does so much.”

Seminole Police Chief John Auer recalls Latchford’s participation in the Police Explorers and seeing him grow up.

“I’ve seen him mature from a playful, young kid that was always inquisitive and wide-eyed about everything to the young man that he’s become,” Auer said. “It’s heartening to see that he’s chosen to go into a public service profession, specifically law enforcement, and I’d like to think that the Seminole Tribe and the police department had something to do with that as well as his father’s heritage in law enforcement.”

Auer said there have been some, but not many, tribal members who have gone into law enforcement careers. He wishes more would consider it.

“Whenever you see someone come from that kind of a family and they want to continue the tradition, that’s always a heartwarming feeling,” he said.

George Latchford (Courtesy photo)
Al Latchford (Courtesy photo)
Will Latchford (Courtesy photo)
Brady Latchford (Courtesy photo)
Damon Scott
Damon is a multimedia journalist for the Seminole Tribune. He has previously been an editor and reporter for digital and print media in Florida and his home state of New Mexico. Send him an email at