A sheriff serves as a licensed peace officer and is responsible for enforcing the criminal laws of the state. The sheriff has duties include managing and operating the county jail, provides security for the courts, serves warrants and civil papers and regulates bail bondsmen in counties with no bail bond board.
Sheriff David Jones has been the Tom Green County sheriff for a little more than three years. He is running against Walter Bryant. Jones began his law enforcement career 40 years ago, serving as chief deputy in Tom Green County before being elected sheriff. Jones said he is running again because he enjoys his job.
“My department has accomplished a lot the past three years and I want to continue with what we have started.” Jones said.
He said patrols, criminal apprehensions and drug arrests have increased during his term. The county jail project is in the beginning stages. Right now, the project is in the design phase. Jones said the sheriff’s department is deeply involved in that project and he wants to see the completion. The county has approved the construction of a new, modern jail that according to Jones, will benefit the community, inmates and employees that work at the jail.
Walter Bryant is also vying for the sheriff’s position. Bryant was in law enforcement with the Tom Green County Sheriff’s Department for 20 years. This isn’t his first time running for the position. He ran in the previous election against Jones.
Bryant is running again because he feels his time as a peace officer is not over. Bryant said, “Watching media about the actions of law enforcement all over the United States, I feel I have something to give. We took an oath to protect and serve and that’s the oath most peace officers live by. I want to add respect and serve. Most peace officers can serve the public better by respecting most people they come up to.” A lot of people he’s talked to feel like they are disrespected by law enforcement. Bryant feels, “the badge is there to protect me from you and you from me. There shouldn’t be any lines crossed.”
If elected, Bryant wants to accomplish a good relationship with the community. He says he is a strong candidate because he knows the meaning of respect. He was raised to learn the meaning of respect by his parents.
“I learned respect going to the Boys and Girls Club and also through martial arts training. If he can bring my teachings of respect to the law enforcement community, it would be a big part of arrest procedures and locating criminals.”