MARSHALL COUNTY, Ala -- Unofficial results show Phil Sims beat longtime sheriff Scott Walls. Walls has held the position for 12 years.
Sims says he is humbled by the outcome.
"I'm overwhelmed, I'm excited, it hasn't set in yet. I'm more humbled than anything, that the people of Marshall County would vote for change and vote for me."
As sheriff, he wants to tackle multiple issues with the community at the core of his goals.
"I want the Sheriff's Office involved in every aspect of our communities," Sims said. "This is my home. I'm going to do what I can to protect my home."
The Marshall County native has 23 years of law enforcement experience under his belt. Sims started his career in the Marshall County Sheriff's Office as a patrol deputy and then investigator. Later, he worked as a Marshall County District Attorney's Office investigator then as a Marshall County Drug Task Force agent.
Sims says the crux of his career revolves around narcotics, gangs, and violent crime investigations.
In October 2005, he went to work for a newly formed drug task force in Etowah County. Sims became a member of the Joint Special Operations Group (SWAT), Etowah County Sheriff's Office dive team member, and the FBI Safe Streets Task Force. He worked through the ranks to deputy commander.
His campaign website details the plan for Sheriff:
• Combat the drug problem and rising crime
• Proactive law enforcement
• By actively investigating elderly and child abuse crimes
• Supporting the drug task force by adding more agents, support staff, and additional funds
• Working with the county commission and local legislators to find money to add more deputies
• For each county school to have a school resource deputy, start drug prevention and awareness classes in our schools to address the drug problem in our youth and work with communities to address crime in those areas
• Work closely with all local, state, and federal agencies
• Make sure deputies and correctional officers receive continuous training required to do their jobs
• Start a K-9 patrol unit/interdiction unit within the sheriff's office
• Use inmates to clean county roads, highways, and lakeshores
• Offer citizens firearm classes to people of Marshall County as a public service
"I'll be working with the guys, working with local departments, state and federal agencies. You're going to see a sheriff who will be out working for the communities and for the people of Marshall County," Sims said.
Sims collected 16,622 voters, while Walls gathered 12,828. We reached out to Sheriff Walls for comment on the race results, but have not heard back just yet.
Sims will take office in January.