Sevierville, Sevier County (WVLT) - Six people have thrown their name in the hat for Sevier County Sheriff following the sheriff's recent death and today's deadline for applicants.
WVLT Volunteer TV's Stephen McLamb joins us live from the newsroom with the latest on who's in the running for the job.
All six candidates have reasons for running, but a few feel Sevier County politics is going to keep them from getting the job.
One says it's hard to win if several people on the commission are county employees, three of them deputies, and their boss is one of those in the running.
When Sheriff Bruce Montgomery died February 9th, the search began for his replacement and by noon Friday six names had come to the courthouse for consideration and everyone has their reasons for running.
"I've always been interested in being sheriff," says Joey Parton. "I started my law enforcement career in Sevier County. This is my home."
"I just wanted to know I care enough to get out there and try and that I'll work hard for the people and that it means that much to me," says Kim Pierce.
"I just feel like I can make a difference and there needs to be some new blood in this county," says Mary Boswell.
Dean Lewis says, "Bruce Montgomery was my friend. I ran before and I think I'd make a good sheriff."
Meanwhile, former DEA agent Brad Lowe says, "a group of citizens came to me wanting some professional law enforcement. There's some apparent division in the sheriff's department and the citizens felt I could unite the department."
Also running is Sheriff Bruce Montgomery's chief deputy.
"I felt that I needed to run to complete his legacy here at the sheriff's department on some of the technological things that we were doing," says Chief Ron Seals.
That's where some of the candidates feel there could be a conflict of interest. Pierce says 9 to 11 of the voting commission members are county employees, three of them deputies who serve under Seals.
"I feel that puts a lot of pressure on them if they don't vote for the guy they work for they are going to be in trouble," Pierce says.
Seals feels that won't be an issue and does have 32-years with the department. "They're going to vote like their constituents would ask them to vote."
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