Gulf County Sheriff Squabble

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With the primaries in the past the campaigns are gearing up for a fight for to the finish in November. In Gulf County the sheriff's race is already getting interesting with some accusations by a former deputy.

The officer says he was stripped of his position because he supported another candidate for sheriff. For almost nine years, John Garner has helped out his community serving as an auxiliary officer for the Gulf County Sheriff's Office, but he says Thursday that all changed.

"They called me and said they were going to take my patrol car," says John Garner, the former Gulf County deputy.

Garner says it's a sign that got him fired. In fact, it is illegal, but current Gulf County Interim Sheriff and Upchurch rival, Michael Hammond, says that's not the reason Garner no longer has a sheriff's vehicle. Hammond says Garner was using a county car to stump for candidates, and that is not allowed.

Hammond says, "They can support whoever they want, just not on my time or in one of my vehicles"

Garner says he never campaigned for anyone and he says he's not the only one this has happened to.

"There are a lot of people who are upset and there are others who have been threatened."

Garner says all he did was put a sign in his front yard and in a small town word got around.

Hammond says Garner is not fired. The retired Garner says he'll stick to working with the Gulf County Search and Rescue Team.