Tuesday, November 17, 2015
ST. JOHNS COUNTY SHERIFF’S RACE DRAWS NEW CANDIDATE: Florida Politics
ST. JOHNS COUNTY SHERIFF’S RACE DRAWS NEW CANDIDATE
November 16, 2015
By Melissa Ross
The election is a year away, but incumbent David Shoar has drawn a challenger in the race for St. Johns County Sheriff.
Debra Maynard, former patrol deputy and crisis intervention coordinator with the department, has filed paperwork for the contest.
Maynard, a Republican, has since left law enforcement and now works in construction management.
She provides an interesting contrast to Shoar on hot-button issues, such as the use of police body cameras (for them) and in particular, one extremely controversial case that has roiled Shoar’s tenure – the death of Michelle O’Connell.
A PBS/Frontline investigation titled “A Death in St. Augustine” examined whether St. Johns County Deputy Sheriff Jeremy Banks was involved, although two investigations failed to find sufficient evidence to bring charges. Banks is still employed as a deputy.
“Officers are not above the law, they are sworn to uphold the law. Upon asking the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for statistics on deputies and officers in the state of Florida who have committed domestic violence, I was sent a very short report. I questioned why so few? My response was, it doesn’t get reported.
Accountability! Where is it? I will NOT turn a blind eye to officers/deputies who have taken an oath to protect others. If Joe citizen goes to jail for battery against a family member, so will the officer; ZERO tolerance,” reads the entry on Maynard’s website under the heading “Officer Involved Domestic Violence.”
Maynard also provides a link to the PBS investigation.
Shoar, a three-term incumbent, ran unopposed his [last] two terms in office. He was first elected in 2004.