Sheriff’s Race Discussion

The Laurens County Democratic Party held a candidates forum for the Laurens County Sheriff’s race last night. County Council member Garrett McDaniel welcomed the candidates and online viewers saying that while there are no democrats running for the Sheriff’s Office, “law and order should be non-partisan.” Incumbent Don Reynolds was not present, but all three challengers were. Each candidate had a five minute opening statement and Moderator Randy Stevens of WLBG asked a series of questions with candidates having three minutes to respond.

All three candidates said they would reinstate the DARE program to work with youth and would reinstate the GED program for inmates in the Johnson Detention Center.

Ted Richardson proposed having “Community Deputies” who are assigned to specific communities around Laurens County. While each talked of community policing, Jarvis Reeder gave a though definition, saying there must be a partnership between the Sheriff’s Office and the communities it serves.

Ricky Chastain proposed stopping what he called “Frivilous Spending” by the Sheriff’s Office, saying the Sheriff’s office doesn’t need large military trucks, referring them as “expensive toys.” Chastain said that in executing search warrants you don’t sneak up on someone in such big vehicles.

When asked the question on how they would address racial bias in law enforcement, Jarvis Reeder said that he would call in an outside agency to investigate any complaints, and said that, “I don’t want any senseless killing like the one in Minnesota.” Ted Richardson said that he would be proactive in his evaluation before hiring to avoid any such incident. Ricky Chastain said that he would establish a citizen’s complaint bureau to handle any such accusation or incident.