Sheriff's candidates ready for election

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With the election on Tuesday, the candidates for Carson City sheriff -- both political novices -- said they are pleased with their campaigns despite some unexpected twists and turns along the trail.

Ken Furlong, 47, a major crimes investigator with the Nevada Division of Investigation, said he is happy with the way the campaign has gone.

"I think we've done a really good job keeping the campaign exactly as we wanted," said the retired Air Force officer. "I'm elated that we've been able to stick to the topic."

"We've gotten outstanding support from the community -- so much so that we almost cannot deal with the volume of calls we've gotten," said Bob Guimont, 35, a deputy with the Carson City Sheriff's Department.

"We've accomplished a lot and met a lot of great people during the campaign and are definitively looking forward to Nov. 5."

Claims of Furlong drinking and driving clouded the campaign recently when an off-duty sheriff's deputy said he witnessed the candidate downing several drinks and leaving in his car from a bar at 2:30 a.m. Sept. 28.

A deputy on duty at the time, stopped Furlong in his car on Roop Street, but let him go after reporting there was no sign he was drinking.

The story sparked more conversation on the Nevada Appeal's Internet message board in the already hotly contested race. More than 1,300 messages about the sheriff's race have been posted.

Furlong backers and Guimont supporters have traded angry words and accusations in letters to the editor and in heated voice mails to the newspaper and to each other.

On Saturday, a bright-green flier identified only as coming from "The Citizen Protection League" surfaced at a couple of grocery stores in Carson City.

It makes allegations against Furlong in regard to the Red's incident, defends Guimont in an incident in which he shot a dog and criticizes the Nevada Appeal.

"This is a last-ditch effort to make this campaign what it's not," Furlong said of the flier. "Whatever he or they are trying to do, it's not working."

Tom Fettic, who has been working on Furlong's campaign, said the allegations in the flier are untrue and represent "the ravings of some mad person."

Guimont said he was unaware of the flier and had never heard of the Citizen Protection League. "It's just more garbage gumming up the system," he said.

Furlong has outspent Guimont by almost $20,000 in what has become the city's costliest race this year.

Records show Furlong has collected $49,450 for advertising and other campaign expenses and has used $7,667 in in-kind contributions. He used $21,238 out of his own pocket on his campaign.

Meanwhile, Guimont, who has the backing of the Sheriff's Protective Association, has put together a $33,279 political war chest and has the help of $4,017 in in-kind contributions.

The Sept. 3 primary narrowed the field to Guimont and Furlong after three other candidates were unable to garner enough votes to make the run-off election.

According to the Carson City Elections office, 21,630 active voters are in Carson City this year -- up just 2 percent from the 21,209 active voters in the 2000 primary. In 2000, 9,298 voters 43.8 percent -- came to the polls.

Carson City Clerk Alan Glover said he expects about 30 percent of the registered voters to vote Tuesday.


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