Sevier County Sheriff’s Office sergeant hospitalized, battling COVID-19

SEVIER COUNTY, Tenn. (WATE) — An East Tennessee officer is in the hospital battling COVID-19. Robert Stoffle is a sergeant with the Sevier County Sheriff’s Office. He’s been with the department for 22 years. His wife said he’s on a ventilator and fighting the virus.

“He’s currently in Leconte Hospital suffering from the virus and pneumonia,” Sevier County Sheriff Ronald Seals said. “His oxygen levels rise and fall, and the amount of oxygen. He’s on a ventilator in an induced coma.”

Stoffle’s wife said he tested positive earlier this month and went to the ER last week.

“Everybody, they love Robert. He’s a good officer. They’re quite concerned with the family and children and everything, and we’re just sending prayers up as much as possible so the lord will heal him and bring him out of this.”

That was made especially clear on Monday night. Officers from Sevier County and neighboring departments came together at Leconte with a big show of support.

“They all showed up at the hospital and they turned on their blue lights and in support of Robert. All of them had a prayer in front of the Leconte Center for him,” Seals said.

Seals and fellow officers are hoping for answered prayers and that they see Stoffle back at work soon.

“He always kept up with what was going on in the communities county-wide, and he could tell you anything going on. We miss that expertise that he had because he had people who would give him that information, so I hope he gets back to work full-time,” Seals said.

Stoffle’s wife said she is moved to see how the community is stepping up to care for her husband, just as he has always cared for them.