Butler County Sheriff Faces Opposition In June Primary Election


By Amanda Wade

From campaign 2014, Sheriff Kenny Harden is in his second term with Butler County, but he has opposition running for his third term by Greenville Police Officer, Thomas Hallford, who says it is time for a change.

Sheriff Kenny Harden says he has more than 36 years of experience in law enforcement at city, county, and state levels. More than seven of those years are as Butler County Sheriff.

He says he has a proven track record as a community leader, with crime rates dropping significantly in the past year, "Everything seems to be working smooth right now. Like I said, we got a 58% drop in major crime from 2012 to 2013, we've cut down on burglaries throughout the county, we've cut down on drugs."

Thomas Hallford is a K-9 officer with the Greenville Police Department. He also spent five years working as a Butler County Sheriff's Deputy.

He says he wants to make changes, like having deputies certified to work traffic wrecks and providing more programs for children and teens, "I want to start a program called Scared Straight. I've talked to some guys that's been to prison and they want to help me get this program started where you go around to schools and stuff and help try to get young people on the right track before they get in trouble."

Both candidates says they have what it takes to serve Butler County.
"I just think it's time for a change. I've lived in Butler County all my life. Been here 45 years. Been married 25 years. I know everybody in the county, and I just feel like I could help them better than what they're being helped now," says Hallford.

Harden says, "I've been told if it's not broke don't fix it. And everything is running smooth. Like I said, the working relationship we do have with all the other agencies and the community. The community helps us a lot solve these cases, and that comes from having trust within the sheriff's department."

The party primary elections will be held on Tuesday, June 3rd.

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