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By Erica Kearns
The search for a new Sheriff of Clay County has been narrowed down from sixteen applicants to just three possibilities. After a day of reviewing interested persons, the Clay County Commission announced that the top three candidates for the job are Jim Paxton, Robert Belt and Garrett Samples, Jr. Jim Paxton, recommended by the Democratic Committee, has a long history of serving Clay County. Robert Belt is currently a deputy with the Clay County Sheriff’s Department and has extensive experience as a law enforcement officer. Garrett Samples, Jr. is currently the Home Confinement Officer with the Sheriff’s Department, a newly created position in the office.
The chosen person will serve as Sheriff of Clay County until an election is held in 2014. The Clay County Commission should announce the appointed candidate during the next county commission meeting on September 25. Look for further details in the next edition of the Clay County Free Press.

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