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Effective at 11:59 p.m. Thursday, a familiar sheriff was back in office in LaRue County.
Judge-Executive Tommy Turner on Thursday received a letter of resignation from Sheriff Bobby Shoffner. Shoffner said in the letter he is vacating the position because of health issues.
Former Sheriff Merle Edlin, whom Shoffner succeeded, will step in for the remaining two years of Shoffner’s term. According to a news release, Edlin will not be a candidate or participate in the 2014 election.
Shoffner’s staff will be retained, according to the release.
In his letter of resignation, Shoffner wrote, “Over the last several months, I have had serious personal health matters arise. My physician states I should concentrate on these health issues to my fullest extent.”
Hodgenville Mayor Terry Cruse, who previously served as chief deputy under Edlin, said the veteran sheriff first was elected to the position in 1986. He served until 2002 when Shoffner was elected to the position.
In a statement released by Turner’s office, Edlin said he would continue to ensure the LaRue County Sheriff’s Office operates to its fullest capacity in its duties of law enforcement and handling of state, school and county tax money.
“Upon the decision of the voters of LaRue County, my goal is to turn over a successful and efficient operation to the citizens’ choice of a full-time sheriff,” Edlin said.
In the release, Turner said this is the busiest time of year for the sheriff’s office because of tax collections, settlements and preparation for tax bill sales. Because Edlin is a veteran of the office, there is no learning curve, he said.
Cruse, who worked with Edlin for more than 10 years, described him as a meticulous and fair sheriff.
“I can’t say anything bad about him,” he said. “He’s the right choice.”
Cruse recalled when he was shot in the line of duty, Edlin frequently visited his deputy chief at home and assisted in his care.
“He did everything he could to take care of me,” the mayor said. “He was more like a family member than a boss.”
Shoffner, who was re-elected in 2010, said he tenders his resignation in sadness and will assist Edlin in any way possible.
“My heart will always contain warmth for the great people of LaRue County and the great individuals I have worked with through the years,” Shoffner wrote in his letter of resignation.
Sarah Bennett can be reached at (270) 505-1750 and email@example.com.