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Burkhead to challenge for sheriff

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Retired fish and wildlife officer calls for return to 'community policing'

By The Staff

Rex Burkhead plans to run for Anderson County sheriff in the spring primary election, he announced this weekend.

Burkhead retired Oct. 31 after 20 years in state government law enforcement with the Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Department of Parks.

“I’ve had a great law enforcement career at Fish and Wildlife,” he said. “But it is time for me to move forward and take this next step. I believe I have a lot to offer the people in Anderson County as their sheriff.”

Burkhead is running as a democrat and will face incumbent Troy Young in the May 2010 primary election.

Some candidates have filed letters of intent to run in next year’s elections, but today (Wednesday) is the first day candidates can officially file to run for office.

Burkhead selected retired Kentucky State Trooper John Giles to join him in his race and serve as his chief deputy.

Both are rooted in law enforcement and are native to the community.

Burkhead has served as the local conservation officer as well as supervisor for much of the surrounding area. He also continued the family meat processing business his father, Norris Burkhead, started 35 years ago.

Giles, who retired from KSP in 2006, is the son of fifth-term Lawrenceburg city councilman and retired KSP Trooper Larry Giles and the grandson of former Lawrenceburg mayor, the late John W. Giles.

Burkhead said if elected to office, he and Giles will be accessible and open to their constituents.

“We’ll bring back the basics of old-time community policing to our sheriff’s office,” he said. “It’s not difficult to do, but it requires a considerable shift in how officers approach the job, and that approach starts at the top.

“With the number of well-trained and capable deputies that are currently working with the Sheriff’s Office, our style of community policing will be an easy adjustment to make.”

Burkhead, 45, is a 1982 graduate of Anderson County High School. He is a graduate of the Kentucky Justice Cabinet’s Department of Criminal Justice Training, the Department of Fish and Wildlife Law Enforcement Academy, the Park Ranger Basic Training Academy and numerous law enforcement continuing education courses. He has been a member of the Pleasant Hill Christian Church in western Anderson County for more than 30 years.

He is married to Lisa Ann (Hanks) Burkhead. Their son, Aaron, is pursuing a degree in criminal justice at Kentucky State University. Their daughter, Molly, attends Anderson County Middle School.

Giles, 44, is a 1983 graduate of Anderson County High School. He attended Eastern Kentucky University, Kentucky State University and graduated from the Kentucky State Police Academy in 1987. He currently operates Practical Training Solutions, LLC, in Lawrenceburg. He is a certified accident reconstructionist and consults with Traffic Collision Reconstruction and Analysis, LLC, in Louisville.

He is married to Tracey Lynn (Rich) Giles, and they are members of the Versailles Church of Christ. Their daughter, Hannah, attends Robert B. Turner Elementary and their son, Haidyn, is 4.