GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - In the hotly contested race for the Republican nomination for Hall County Sheriff, challenger Rick Conrad has won the race.
There is no one running on the Democrat side of the ticket, so essentially Conrad has clinched the office which has been held for the past 19 years by Jerry Watson.
The vote count was 2445 for Conrad, 2365 for Watson.
Conrad has been a deputy for the Hall County Sheriff's office and also spent 10 years on the Drug Task Force. In making his challenge to his current boss, Conrad said he felt the county needed change.
"Once I went back to uniform I started getting approached with things that had been going on in the department and the morale issues, law enforcement is family and you have to stick up for your family and go to bat for them", said Conrad.
Prior to Tuesday night's final vote tally, Conrad said he will push for stronger relationships between officers and the community.
"Get out in the community," Conrad said. "Start visiting with the people in the towns. Regardless of what's going on, I don't campaign on duty but I have no problem stopping and telling people hi."
This was the first time Watson faced a challenger in seeking re-election as Hall County Sheriff.