Santa Cruz County

Sheriff's race heats up in Santa Cruz County

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. - Two more people have thrown their hat in the ring in the Santa Cruz County Sheriff-Coroner race.

Sheriff Phil Wowak announced last week that he would not seek re-election and would be stepping down at the end of the year when his current term ends. He threw his endorsement behind Chief Deputy Jim Hart as his successor. Hart has planned a kickoff party for his campaign on March 30.

Two retired Santa Cruz County Sheriff's lieutenants have also filed to run. Former Lt. Bob Pursley, who retired from the department in early 2013, is now in the race, as is former Lt. Roger Wildey, who retired in 2005.

This marks just the second time in 40 years that there is an open sheriff's seat up for election in the county.

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