top of page

Major Pat Dougherty
Harris County Sheriff's Office
1200 Baker Street
Houston, Texas 77002

Patrick L. Dougherty is currently a Major with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office, assigned to the Detention Command.  Major Dougherty has over 40 years of Law Enforcement and Correctional experience. 

In 1981, Pat Dougherty was hired by the Houston Police Department (HPD).  During his tenure at HPD, Pat spent three years as a patrolman, two years as an FTO, seven years as a sergeant, and 24 years as a lieutenant managing operations for the City of Houston jail system, one of the largest municipal jail systems in the nation.  While with HPD, Pat was designated “City Jail Expert” and successfully enhanced city jail policies, increased staff training and developed greater accountability mechanisms; actions which ultimately led to the end of a multiple decade federal consent decree over City of Houston jail conditions.  In 2017, after almost 36 years of service, Pat retired from the Houston Police Department.  After his retirement from HPD, Pat was actively recruited by Sheriff Ed Gonzalez to help manage the Harris County Jail.  

In 2001, while with HPD, Pat Dougherty was one of the original authors of a technical report recommending to the City of Houston and Harris County that they build a joint inmate processing center and close the city jails.  Pat, representing the city, and his counterparts for the Sheriff’s Office, worked through years of financial setbacks, political issues and numerous stakeholder changes to help make the project succeed.  In February 2019, the 100-million-dollar Joint Processing Center (JPC) opened and the City of Houston closed its’ jails. 

Major Dougherty has a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Mississippi. He has also attended the Southwestern Law Enforcement Institute and is a graduate of the National Institute of Corrections Jail Administrator School.  Major Dougherty has a Jailers License and a Master Peace Officer License from the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE).  Major Dougherty is recognized as a Certified Jail Manager (CJM) by the American Jail Association (AJA) and has passed the Jail Administrator exam for the State of Texas.  Major Dougherty was also a recipient of The 100 Club’s 2016 Officer of the Year Award for his contributions to the Harris County/City of Houston JPC Project. 

If you need official HCSO communication about the JPC Project, please contact the Harris County Sheriff's Office and ask to speak with Major Dougherty.  Pat is extremely knowledgeable and an expert in the field of detentions.  It was an honor to work with him.

bottom of page