Lunceford fends off Stevenson in sheriff’s race

Published 11:02 pm Thursday, August 2, 2018

Throughout a general election season that saw campaigning get heated at times on social media, residents will see a familiar face at the Carter County Sheriff’s Office for the years to come.

Incumbent and Republican Party nominee Dexter Lunceford retained his position as sheriff Thursday night by knocking off Independent candidate Steve Stevenson 6,142 to 4,804 according to unofficial voting totals collected by the Carter County Election Commission for the county’s general election. Out of the 22 precincts and early/absentee ballots, Lunceford carried roughly 56 percent of the 10,000-plus votes that were tallied.

Once polls closed, Lunceford was joined family, friends and colleagues at Medical Care in Elizabethton to view the results. During a busy election cycle, Lunceford was quick to give thanks to the residents that elected him back to the post of sheriff.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

“I want to thank everyone that came out and supported the campaign,” Lunceford said. “We picked up more votes than what we had in the primary. We’re just excited about the support and look forward to the future.”

It was the second election win for Lunceford in 2018. The sheriff retained the Republican Party nomination during the primary, outlasting opponent Rocky Croy 5,209 to 4,173.

Lunceford was first elected as sheriff in 2014. According to information provided by CCSO, the crime rate has dropped 23 percent since he took office and the number of personnel on patrol has increased by 40 percent. Outstanding arrest warrants have also dropped from roughly 4,000 to 1,400 during Lunceford’s time in office, according to CCSO. The department has also worked toward the implementation of SROs at each county school and the implementation of the DARE program for youth.

Moving forward, Lunceford added the goal is to continue the momentum over the past four years.

“We’re going to continue the same things we’re doing,” Lunceford said. “Just more of it.”

Lunceford is a Carter County native and served in the Marines Corps while also being involved in law enforcement since 1984 with multiple Tennessee agencies.