Jim Davis, former head of Denver FBI office, dies unexpectedly

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Jim Davis, shown here helping FBI agents fingerprint Saddam Hussein after the former dictator’s capture in Iraq, also served as the director of the Colorado Dept. of Public Safety.

DENVER (KDVR) — James “Jim” Davis, the former special agent in charge at the Denver office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, died Friday.

A source told FOX31 and Channel 2 that Davis’ death was unexpected.

Originally from Detroit, Davis started his career with the FBI in 1985. He spent time in the Richmond, Chicago and Indianapolis offices, as well as at headquarters in Quantico, Virginia.

Davis was appointed to lead the Denver FBI office in 2008. Before that, he was the legal attaché in the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.

During his time in Iraq, Davis was the FBI agent who fingerprinted Saddam Hussein after he was captured.

While in charge of the Denver Division, he oversaw the successful 2009 investigation of Najibullah Zazi, whose plot to bomb the New York City subway was thwarted by federal agents.

After his time as special agent in charge in Denver, Davis became the head of the Colorado Department of Public Safety under then-Gov. John Hickenlooper.

Under Davis’ leadership at the department, the state successfully integrated homeland security, emergency management and wildland firefighting into a single department.

This new structure resulted in more coordinated and effective responses to emergencies such as the High Park, Waldo Canyon, Royal Gorge and Black Forest fires, as well as the September 2013 floods.

In 2014, he left that position to start his own security firm.

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