By Matt Armstrong
Ogden News Service
CHARLES TOWN - With all Jefferson County precincts reporting, Democratic candidate and current Jefferson County Sheriff Robert "Bobby" Shirley will advance to November's general election after defeating fellow Democrat Everett "Ed" Boober in Tuesday's primary election for Jefferson County sheriff.
Shirley received 2,217 votes, 64.49 percent, compared to Boober's 1,221 votes, or 35.51 percent, according to unofficial totals released by the Jefferson County Clerk's Office.
Shirley, who is in the final year of his first four-year term as sheriff, has more than 25 years of law enforcement experience. His current term ends at the end of 2012.
"The sheriff is all the people's sheriff. It's not about party affiliation, it's about his commitment, his desire to serve the people, and I'm here to serve all the people in Jefferson County no matter what their party is," Shirley said Tuesday night following announcements of the vote totals.
"I'm going to continue down the path I've taken from day one, commit myself to be a hands-on, working sheriff. I support my department I support the community, the people in it and I will always work hard for the people of this county and this state," he added.
Boober served two consecutive four-year terms as Jefferson County sheriff prior to Shirley's term, but state law prohibits sheriffs from serving more than two consecutive terms, although they can take a term off and run for election at a later time, as Boober did in the primary election.
Shirley will now face Republican challenger Earl Ballenger in November's general election. Ballenger, a former officer with the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department, received 1,749 votes in an uncontested primary.
The general election is scheduled for Nov. 6. Additional information on Tuesday's primary election is available online at www.jeffersoncountyclerkwv.com.