Race for Lee County sheriff heats up

Published: Updated:

LEE COUNTY, Fla.- Stephanie Eller hopes to become the first woman sheriff in Lee County history.

She’s running against Mike Scott, who’s seeking a fourth term.

Robert Forrest, a former employee in the office, is also challenging Scott.

Both say it’s time for a change. Eller has concerns about the flow of information, or lack of it, from the agency to the public.

Sheriff Scott says he’s proud to run on his record, and believes he has a lot of support.

Sgt. Eller is a 15-year veteran in the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, but announced Tuesday she will retire soon to take on Sheriff Scott.

She criticizes the office for not releasing more details about the murder in Bonita Springs.

“It doesn’t appear that they have even told the citizens ‘you have nothing to worry about, you’re safe, we believe this is an isolated incident.’ Or, ‘lock your doors, we’ve got a madman on the loose.’ The people need to know one of those two things,” said Eller.

Scott replied, saying Eller, who used to work in public information, should know better.

“If there’s a crazy, raged killer on the loose, or some wild, catastrophic, unstable event going on, of course we want to communicate that,” said Scott.

Forrest also is running for sheriff. He used to be a lieutenant in the agency.

“After a while, things wear off and it depends on whether or not he’s still in favor with voters now as he was in the past,” said Forrest.

Scott disagrees and points to the money, donated to his campaign since early March totaling more than $300,000.

“I’ve enjoyed more support since March 2nd, than I’ve ever enjoyed since I’ve run for sheriff. And I take that not on anything again that I specifically have done, but more the body of work of the men and women of the sheriff’s office,” said Scott.

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