MIAMI – In what could be a tight race, voters in Ottawa County will head to the polls next week to decide the race for sheriff.

Voters will be casting their ballots for sheriff, with incumbent Sheriff Jeremy Floyd vying to maintain his office against opponent David Dean.

Born and raised in Miami, Floyd attended and graduated Commerce Public Schools and NEO A&M College, and then attended Missouri Southern State University. In 1998, he graduated the 500-hour Missouri Peace Officer State Training academy and then started his career locally in Delaware County in 1999. He attended and graduated from full-time Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training in 2000 and, in 2003, left Oklahoma to further his career in Arkansas, graduating the Arkansas Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies’ full time academy.

In 2011, Floyd moved back home to Ottawa County and, in 2015, graduated from the Central Christian College of Kansas with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and now has approximately 23 years of law enforcement service. He has two sons and a daughter he says are his life.

With C.L.E.E.T. advanced certification, Floyd is a C.L.E.E.T. instructor and a C.L.E.E.T. Reserve Academy coordinator with over 2,000 hours of combined law enforcement training hours. He is also an Oklahoma Sheriff’s Academy graduate, a 115th National Sheriff Institute Academy graduate, has instructed over 3,000 law enforcement officers on every level in 13 states, and is Oklahoma Firefighter and First Responder certified.

Floyd’s list of accomplishments as sheriff include establishing inmate work details, obtaining and updating the records and report writing programs, updating and obtaining locks for the jail, securing grants for the OCSO, partnering locally to address domestic violence issues, growing and improving the OCSO reserve deputy program, improving training for deputies across the board, and assisting with many investigations, including cold cases.

Floyd said he also updated policy and procedure from 1999 to today’s standards, obtained updated equipment and uniforms for deputies, established proper inmate medical coverage, remodeled the sex offender registered program to insure compliance, and improved community outreach programs.

He also established an animal cruelty investigator to address neglect cases, worked with other lawmakers to establish laws that make communities safer, and partnered with Tribal law enforcement to provide faster responses and greater coverage in emergencies.

“The OCSO has housed, processed, and and/or booked in over 7,655 inmates, served, processed, or recalled 6,419 warrants, and received, dispatched, and/or handled 28,009 calls of service to date, all since Jan. 2017,” Floyd said. “And the OCSO has not been named in any lawsuits during my watch as sheriff, although I did unfortunately inherit several.”

Floyd is also on the National Sheriffs’ Association mental health committee, the NSA animal cruelty committee, the OSU county training board, the Oklahoma Sheriffs’ Association training committee, joined the tristate case squad, and is a member of the local community sentencing board.

If re-elected, Floyd said he will continue to fight for funding to increase resources and staff, work with community leaders to address thefts and drug problems, establish educational, rehab, and increased mental health awareness programs at the jail, and will continue to improve jail conditions.

In addition, Floyd said, “I will increase patrol coverage and community outreach programs, seek out additional grants for much needed resources the OCSO has no budget to address, continue to grow the reserve deputy program, and establish a sheriff posse for large events and major incidents, etc., that will receive training and be part of the law enforcement family.

“I am Oklahoma Second Amendment Association endorsed, a proven full time working sheriff and leader, and I will have an open door policy. Most importantly, I will ensure your constitutional rights are not infringed upon; I am a constitutional sheriff,” Floyd said.

Dean is a lifelong Ottawa County resident, retired as a detective after 23 years of service with the Miami Police Department, and is a veteran with six years in the US Marine Corps, seeing service in Operation Desert Shield / Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Dean also has an associate’s degree in criminal justice from NEO A&M, and a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice administration from MSSU. He has been married for 26 years and has three children and three grandchildren. He graduated from Commerce High School in 1987 and joined the Marines in 1988, where he served on active duty until 1992. He also served with the 3rd Battalion 7th Marines as an anti-tank assault man.

Dean said he re-enlisted into the Marine Corps reserves in 2005, after being out for 13 years, because 911 gave him a strong calling. “My wife supported me in this and after passing the physical fitness standards I was able to reenlist. I joined the reserve unit out of Broken Arrow and eventually ended up serving with the 1st Battalion 24th Marines. I was activated and served in Fallujah, Iraq, during Operation Iraqi Freedom.”

Dean worked at the Labette Correctional Conservation Camp in Oswego, Kansas, from 1994-1996 as a drill corporal after attending U.S. Army drill instructor school to be certified as a corrections drill officer. He was hired by the MPD in 1996 and was a patrolman until 2011 when he became a detective. He retired in 2019.

“I want to put more deputies on the streets and roads. I am going to go to an 8-hour workday where I can hire part-time deputies that work full-time at other agencies so they can patrol the county. I want to see experienced law enforcement on the streets that newer and/or younger deputies can gain knowledge from,” Dean said.

“I will obtain a working relationship with local departments, including tribal departments and governments, along with other agencies outside our county. I will also work with the different offices within this county to make the sheriff's office more proficient for everyone.”

He added that he eventually wants to have an employee working with a federal narcotics task force. “The amount of narcotics that is coming into this county is ridiculous. Our county being on the border of two states does not help with this. Narcotic investigations take a while to get to the point where arrests can be made. The majority of narcotics in this county come from outside the county and being part of a federal task force can help in bringing those trafficking and dealing in this county to justice,” Dean said.

He also said he wants to eventually have an employee working on a human trafficking task force. “This is a problem in our county, whether it be trafficking victims being brought into our county for financial reasons, or trafficking within families themselves. And, along with trafficking, I want to have someone working with other agencies on stopping child sex offenders, another big problem within our county,” Dean added.

“I have used the word eventually because nothing is going to happen quickly if I am elected. I understand that there is a limit of what can be done because of not having the finances to accomplish everything all at once. I am going to find anyway necessary to obtain funds through donations and/or grants. This is where working with other agencies will have a positive impact on our county,” he said.

“I will serve this county with honesty and integrity. I have spent most of my adult life either serving this country or this community, and on certain occasions this county. I believe in honor and will bring honor to the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office.”