One more joins race for sheriff
Published 2:51 pm Monday, March 27, 2006
By By KERRY WHIPPLE BEAN – Publisher
A person familiar with Escambia County politics has made the sheriff's race a two-man battle so far.
Former sheriff Tim Hawsey tossed his hat in the ring this week. He joins current sheriff Grover Smith in the Democratic primary.
Hawsey said he has many reasons to run, but they boil down to one: “I just want to,” he said.
Hawsey has 34 years of experience in law enforcement - beginning with a year stint as a dispatcher for the Brewton Police Department at age 18 - and is currently assistant police chief in Flomaton. He previously served as sheriff for 20 years before Smith won the election in 2002.
Hawsey said he believes his education and experience give him an edge in the race.
Smith has said he is proud of the progress made in the sheriff's office since his election, noting the installation of maximum security locks and lock controls in the Escambia County Detention Center and the installation of 32 color surveillance cameras in the detention center and the work release center. Those ongoing projects are being paid for by housing federal inmates.
Other candidates who have qualified with the Democratic party include: Judge Rachel Agerton for Probate Judge, Commissioner Larry White for County Commission District 3; Commissioner Wiley Tait for County Commission District 5; Board member Jack D. Crutchfield for Escambia County School Board District 3; Board member Danny Benjamin for Escambia County School Board District 2, and Board member Charles H. Brooks for Escambia County School Board District 7.
Incumbent Circuit Clerk James Kenneth Taylor has qualified for re-election with the state Democratic Party, and Atmore Attorney and Municipal Court Judge Bert Rice has qualified for the Circuit Judge Seat being vacated by retiring Circuit Judge Joseph Brogden.
Local Republicans who have qualified include Alan Baker, House district 66, and Ray Madden, county commission district 1.
Local Democratic candidates have until 5 p.m. Thursday to qualify to run for office with the county Democratic party. Anyone interested can call Reo Kirkland at 867-5711.
Local Republican candidates have until April 7 to qualify with the Escambia County Republican party. Anyone interested can call Edwards at 867-4218 or Mike Watson at Watson Accounting, 867-2239.