Longtime lawman making run for sheriff
by Cris Ritchie Editor
HAZARD Former Hazard Police Chief Rod Maggard was a late addition to the list of candidates filing to make a run for the Perry County Sheriffs Office last week, but he says he believes he has the experience needed to make an effective sheriff.
Maggard, who is also a former state trooper and recently retired as director of the Rural Law Enforcement technology Center in Hazard, said he believes the county needs a sheriff with law enforcement experience.
Im not ready to retire, he said. I feel like, as the chief of police, I was real involved in community policing, and I believe we need that for Perry County.
Maggard, a Republican, sat on the board that created the police officer professional standards and was one of the first certified officers in the state, and said he hopes to be the first sheriff elected who had perviously made a career out of law enforcement.
I feel like that in the history of Perry County weve never had anybody elected that has had a law enforcement career, Maggard said. And I feel like Ive got a lot to offer to the community and the people of Perry County.
A resident of Hazard, Maggard is also a veteran of the Vietnam war, and said he looks to address issues such as prescription drug abuse if elected, but that particular issue will take a community effort.
Id like to see some more community involvement in the drug problem. Thats a big problem, he said.
And that involvement will take every community in the county, Maggard continued.
I feel like the community based policing is the only way to go, he said. Leatherwood may have a different problem than Buckhorn may have, or Saul, and [we need to] try to find out what the problems are and try to be the problem solver, but have them be a part of that solving situation.
While Maggard will carry over a wealth of experience in law enforcement to his campaign for sheriff, he will also face opponents in the Republican primary that can fall back on their own experience.
Richie Miller, who recently retired from the Kentucky State Police, will also be seeking his partys nomination. Miller filed for office in November, and told the Herald at the time that he knows the needs of the citizens of the county. Miller said he decided to run because he thinks he will be able to work to provide a safer and more productive environment across the county.
I just want to help and be there for them, he said in November. It would be a privilege to continue to serve the people of the county as their sheriff.
Also seeking the Republican nomination is Jeff Pennington, who during an interview with the Herald in November listed dealing with the drug problem as a major issue with which he plans to address by upgrading tactics and seeking funding for a local drug treatment center.
Penningtons resume includes working with International Narcotics Law Enforcement in Afghanistan for the past three years, as well as past service with the U.S. Coast Guard and the U.S. Army.
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