Republican Tommie Johnson III wins of Oklahoma County Sheriff

Republican Tommie Johnson III is the winner of the 2020 Oklahoma County Sheriff election. This is the first time in Oklahoma history that a Oklahoma County will have a Black sheriff. 

Republican Tommie Johnson III ran on four key themes: safer communities, fiscal responsibility, partnerships and progress. Democrat Wayland Cubit ran on transparency and accountability, mental health and criminal justice reform.

Johnson serves with the Norman Police Department. During his campaign, he said he was running to bring new leadership to the sheriff’s office. Cubit is a lieutenant with the Oklahoma City Police Department after working there for the past 24 years.  

The two candidates faced off in a debate at Douglass High School on Oct. 22 covering many topics including immigration and customs enforcement in the county jail, systemic racism and policing, improving community trust and mental-health training.

Johnson said he believes that having ICE in the county jails helps increase communication with federal law enforcement and local law enforcement. Johnson asserted  that it would make the county a safer place. Cubit does not support ICE being in the county jail and says that having ICE at the county jail deters immigrant members of the community from communicating out of fear of being deported. 

Cubit and Johnson shared similar views when it came to racism and policing. Both candidates saId there should be an improvement in racial bias training at the sheriff’s office. 

Both candidates agreed that State Question 805 is a bad idea. State Question 805 would restrict judges from using a person’s past nonviolent felony conviction to impose a greater sentence. Voters rejected State Question 805. 

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