Former Jefferson County sheriff's deputy and Altheimer police chief James Murry has announced that he will run for sheriff in the May 2014 Democratic primary.

Former Jefferson County sheriff’s deputy and Altheimer police chief James Murry has announced that he will run for sheriff in the May 2014 Democratic primary.

A lifelong resident of Jefferson County, Murry is a native of Wabbaseka and a graduate of Wabbaseka-Tucker High School.

He started his law enforcement career as a volunteer rescue officer with the sheriff’s department in 1985, then began work as a full-time deputy in 1987. According to a press release, Murry received various outstanding performance awards from former sheriff W. C. “Dub” Brassell and was recognized by the Federal Bureau of Investigation for fugitive investigations.

Murry also served as Altheimer chief of police from 1990 to 1996,and worked for the Arkansas Department of Corrections for nine years as a sergeant in human resources and retention and as an emergency coordinator lieutenant.

He is currently employed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as a maintenance mechanic/local government liaison for the New Orleans District.

For the past 20 years, Murry has been the pastor of Gospel Temple Missionary Baptist Church.

Murry said he is running for sheriff because he believes the office needs to be operated in a more fiscally and financially responsible manner in order to better serve the people of Jefferson County.

“With the steady decline of the county’s population which in turn affects the tax base, the Sheriff’s office cannot continue spending taxpayer dollars that are not available,” Murry said in the press release. “My two viable concerns are public safety and fiscal responsibility.”

Murry said his campaign objectives are to work with the Quorum Court in maintaining an effective and affordable budget, re-establish the Junior Deputy program, establish a working relationship with local, state and federal agencies, increase the presence of patrol deputies in rural areas of the county, utilize vacant buildings throughout the county for offices and substations, restore honor and integrity to the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office and assist the courts with expedited process service.

He is the son of James E, and Dorothy Murry. Murry and his wife, Joyce Brooks Murry, have been married for 28 years and have three children.

Incumbent Sheriff Gerald Robinson, who is in his fourth term, has not said yet if he will seek reelection.