Local News

Primary To Determine Next Top Cumberland Lawman

Posted April 28, 2006

— The Cumberland County sheriff race is expected to be one of the hottest in Tuesday's primary. The four candidates have almost 100 years of combined experience fighting crime.

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Few Cumberland County politicians have name recognition like incumbent Sheriff Earl "Moose" Butler, but critics are quick to point out lawsuits against his office and problems with the jail.

"Everybody has a right to make a comment. But, until you've walked in somebody's shoes, you really don't know," he said.

Many may consider Butler a shoo-in for a fourth term, but his three opponents say don't count them out just yet.

Former Green Beret and career FBI agent Julian Stackhaus has a lot of federal experience. Now, he has to show he can handle day-to-day street crime.

"I've become very familiar with how local police agencies conduct their investigations, how they manage their personnel and how they utilize their resources," he said.

Larry Godbold is a parole and probation officer with ties to Fayetteville and Spring Lake police. His platform includes having more officers on the streets, including himself.

"I will wear a uniform and I'll be part of the action every day," he said.

David Stewart spent almost 20 years with the sheriff's office.

"I've worked narcotics, special operations, violent crime task force, motorcycle unit, arson unit, detective division," he said.

Butler, Godbold and Stackhaus went to high school in the Fayetteville area and have college degrees. Stewart went to East Wake High School and finished some college.


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