Globe Officer Joins Race For Sheriff

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Richard Shaw has dreamed of being the sheriff of Gila County his whole life.

"I have been planning for this for the last 20 years," Shaw said.

Shaw, a Globe Police Officer, is the third candidate vying for the job of sheriff. The Republican is competing against Democrat and current sheriff, John Armer, and Republican and Salt River Police Lt. Kim Pound.

Shaw, a native of Arizona, joined the Gila County Sheriff's Office after four years as an active Marine.

"I served 12 years with GCSO under Lyman Peace and Joe Rodriguez," Shaw said. "I transferred to Globe in 1996."

Shaw believes the current sheriff's office has been stagnant and needs to grow.

"The department never grew and I want it to grow," Shaw said. "I want to put the right people in the right positions and I have got some good people to bring in who have a lot of wisdom."

Shaw said he wants to implement a reserve program to have more deputies while saving the taxpayers money.

"A reserve program is what the office needs and because you don't have to pay reserve officers benefits, it saves money," Shaw said.

Although Shaw said he is unfamiliar with the specific needs of Rim country, the first thing he will do is conduct open meetings to understand the issues of residents in the northern part of the county.

"I don't think any sheriff does that enough," Shaw said. "I want to hear people's concerns and what they want."

Shaw said he also wants to put inmates at the jail to work.

"The Good Book says if you don't work, you don't eat," Shaw said. "The public should not pay for them to sit down and watch TV."

Shaw's ideas for his staff include more training and a pay increase for officers working swing shift and graveyard hours.

"There is more training that should be done. Training should be done every day," Shaw said. "And I would like to look at a shift differential in pay for deputies -- you get paid a little extra money for swings and graves. This would amount to pennies on the dollar for taxpayers."

Shaw said, if elected sheriff, Payson residents will see him on a regular basis.

"I am not going to be the person you only see during election year," Shaw said. "You will see me in this part of the county -- I guarantee it."

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