Former Nowata County sheriff calls for new sheriff to step down

A revolving door at the Nowata County Sheriff’s department could soon be open again. (KTUL)

NOWATA, Okla. (KTUL) -- A revolving door at the Nowata County Sheriff’s department could soon be open again.

The newest sheriff under fire as a former lawman claims the office is being mishandled.

“It’s time for him to move on," said former Nowata County Sheriff, Jim Hallet.

Strong words from Jim Hallet.

The former Nowata County sheriff taking aim at the current administration.

“They’re just not taking care of business," said Hallet.

Hallet held the office for 18 years before retiring in 2015.

The county hasn’t been able to keep a sheriff for long ever since.

In fact two sheriffs have come and gone since he left.

“I hate to see it because of what we’ve worked so hard for getting going for the county and then to see it all fall off the rail and go downhill so bad," said Hallet.

Now he’s speaking up against the current sheriff Kenny Freeman.

“I asked him to resign, he did not," said Hallet.

Hallet asked county commissioners yesterday to oust sheriff Freeman, saying the whole department is being mishandled.

“I think it’s out of control," said Hallet.

Speaking with current sheriff Kenny Freeman today, he says he defends his actions and says there’s more to the story.

“This is something I've done my entire life, I fell back into it and here I am again," said current Nowata County Sheriff Kenny Freeman.

Commissioners appointed Freeman in February when the last sheriff, Sandy Hadley resigned.

Now, just six months later he could be let go.

“I don’t feel like I have done anything wrong to be removed from this office," said Freeman.

Sheriff Freeman says he’s handled all his department’s issues and doesn’t think he should lose his job.

“I love the job, I love the community, I grew up here, I live here, my family is here," said Freeman.

“I’m trying to be the nice guy through all of this, I don’t want to do dirty politics and they’re forcing me into it and I hate it," said Freeman.

The commissioners could make a decision Monday.

But for now, an uncertain future for the Nowata County Sheriff's Office.

Freeman is running for re-election in November. In the meantime, Hallet says he’d step in if called upon.

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