There’s a new sheriff in town: How the local elections could have constitutional implications

There's a new sheriff in town: How the local elections could have constitutional implications

Macon County Sheriff Robbie Holland hosted a Back The Blue Rally in Franklin in 2020. In the Western North Carolina region, eight long-time sheriffs aren’t seeking reelection. Voters in Avery, Cherokee, Clay, Haywood, Jackson, Macon, Transylvania and Rutherford counties will elect a new sheriff in the midterm election. BPR talked with retiring sheriffs and reformers about what this turnover means for the region and the future of law enforcement. Macon County Sheriff Robert Holland has been sheriff since 2002 – now he’s retiring. In his office there is a picture of Holland as juvenile officer shaking hands with Former President George Bush when Bush was campaigning for his son in 2000. Sheriff Holland shared this timeline of all 26 sheriffs that have served in Macon County. I was in my early twenties. I was a baby. That was a long time ago,” said Holland. He’s says that he has seen the job grow in his three decades in law enforcement. “Gosh, looking back at, you know, through my career, there’s been lots of changes. I can remember a time where when your patrol car broke down, you used your personal vehicle to get through the week until you could have your patrol car fixed. Computers – I was one of the first ones to have a computer in the agency as an officer,” said Holland. Professionalization, and more technology have been increasingly a part of law enforcement reform. For example, in 2020, the North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association recommended reforms […]

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