Three candidates have stepped forward in Pamlico County to serve in the next four year term.
Detective Chris Davis, David Spruill, and Incumbent Sheriff Billy Sawyer will all run in the May 6th primary.
The filing period for Sheriff starts on February 10th but, Thursday, all three candidates said they would file on the first day.
The current Sheriff, Sheriff Sawyer, has been in office for 12 years. Before his service as Sheriff, he was a deputy in the county for another 12.
Detective Davis is currently a deputy in Martin County, but also served as a deputy for several years in Pamlico County.
David Spruill is the former Emergency manager for the county as well as a former firefighter and deputy.
All three candidates said their goal is to focus on tackling drug problems in the county.
They differ in their approach to making the department better. David Spruills said his experience in different first responder organizations could give him an edge.
"I've always enjoyed helping people. That's why I was in EMS, fire service, a deputy ," Spruills said. "I've worked with all of your agencies. That's one of the biggest things is my networking. That I've been able to create over the last 20 years."
Davis said he would try to grow the department, by exploring various federal funds and grants.
"We want to bring professional law enforcement to the citizens of Pamlico County and doing so hold the deputies to a higher professional standard," Davis said.
Sheriff Billy Sawyer said he'll keep on a steady path and that he thinks the past four years have been successful.
"We've sent 16 of our largest dope dealers to federal prison," said Sheriff Sawyer. Sheriff Sawyer also said a new jail opened during his term, and that was bringing in $1,000,000 into the county each year.