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Maricopa County Sheriff Russ Skinner to seek election after appointment

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(The Center Square) – Maricopa County Sheriff Russ Skinner filed to run for the position in the 2024 election.

Skinner was appointed by the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors earlier in February after former Sheriff Paul Penzone resigned. He was serving as interim sheriff before being formally appointed and sworn in.

According to his filing obtained by The Center Square, Skinner is running for the Democratic Party. He switched from Republican to Democrat to qualify for the position, as Penzone was a Democrat.

However, Skinner’s term will only last until a new sheriff is elected in the November general election. During a news conference following his swearing-in, he said he had not decided as to whether or not he would launch a campaign.

“I look forward to serving the community,” Skinner said at the time, The Center Square reported.

He was appointed by a 4-1 vote by the board, with sole Democrat Steve Gallardo voting against him.

“The people of Maricopa County made it crystal clear in 2016: they were done with Joe Arpaio—done with the way he’d politicized the office, wasted money, put the county at legal risk, and unfairly and cruelly targeted communities of color,” Gallardo said in a statement, The Center Square reported then.

The sheriff has been a part of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office for 33 years, which includes all of former Republican Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s time in office, according to the department’s website.

“They voted for Democrat Paul Penzone because they wanted their trust in MCSO restored. I believe the former sheriff made important progress in his seven years in office, but there’s still a long way to go. Ultimately, voters will decide who leads this organization long-term,” Gallardo continued.

He has not formally made a campaign announced yet as of Tuesday morning.

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