DEKALB COUNTY, AL (WAFF) - There’s a new sheriff in town in DeKalb County.
Nick Welden won the seat being vacated by retiring sheriff Jimmy Harris.
Welden says he ran on change and that’s exactly what the people of DeKalb County will get. Change, he says, for the better.
“I felt good going into the election. I was just hoping there would be a big turnout and people would come out because we had worked really hard,” said Welden.
And turnout they did Tuesday night in DeKalb County. Welden defeated his Democratic challenger by a whopping 80 percent of the vote with a record turnout of voters. More than 50 percent of the electorate voted at the polls.
“I did not expect that kind of numbers to come in. I was really surprised by those numbers,” said Welden.
So Welden will be another new Republican to replace a Democrat. The sheriff elect says he's going to take some much needed time off now, but not for long.
“We’re going to hit the ground running. We’ve ran on being a change and that’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to go right after the problems in the county and we’re going to put our youth first,” said Welden.
But where Welden says cooperation was poor among the police departments and sheriff's office, that will be one of the first changes.
“They’re waiting on it and they’ve been wanting it just a bad as we have so you are going to see a big difference in the cooperation among law enforcement in DeKalb County. I believe it will be like something you’ve never seen before,” said Welden.
Welden is expected to be sworn in when the new term begins in January.