Candidates seeking office had an opportunity to speak at the 39th annual Moses D. Knox Freedom Fund Banquet recently at Greensville County High School. Incumbent Sheriff W.T. (Tim) Jarratt and Stephen E. King did not let the opportunity pass.

On Nov. 3, 2015, Jarratt received more than 60% of the vote in a four-way race that included King. The sheriff is a 32-year law enforcement veteran certified through the Department of Criminal Justice.

“We are focused on community relations by positive interaction between deputies and our citizens,” Jarratt said. “We are advocates of the Boys & Girls Club. We partner with our public school system by providing security and positive law enforcement interaction.”

Jarratt listed the many events in which his department is involved. Events include National Night Out, Hopefest, and Relay for Life. Jarratt said his office partners with the Neighborhood Watch Program, safety training, attend the monthly Community Prayer, and participates in the Shop with a Cop Christmas program for youth.

Jarratt cited his department’s focus on advanced training through what he described as an enhanced quality of professional service.

“We are equipped with the newest and latest technology available, mostly paid for by grants and asset forfeiture monies,” Jarratt said. “As your sheriff, I will strive to continue to providing quality public safety service to our community by promoting a safe environment through law enforcement and citizen interaction with an emphasis on integrity, fairness, and professionalism.”

King said if he is elected sheriff, his office will be equal, fair, and firm by having the best staff that is genuinely vested in the community. He said patrols would be increased, and the department would be involved in community outreach programs for youth.

The challenger told the audience that there is a lot of potential in the city and the county, and it is a shame to waste it by not nurturing every opportunity.

“As your sheriff, I will maximize crime prevention, work hard to eradicate the drug plague that has wrought, and is still wreaking havoc in our community.”

King said his department would enhance community relations and strengthen physical responsibility within the office. He again emphasized programs for youth.

“Our youth are our future,” King said.

On Nov. 5, voters in Emporia and Greensville County will decide which candidate will serve a four-year term as sheriff.