published Wednesday, August 22nd, 2012

Trion officer beats incumbent in Chattooga sheriff’s election

Trion, Ga., police officer Mark Schrader soundly defeated incumbent Chattooga County Sheriff John Everett in Tuesday’s runoff election.

Schrader netted nearly 70 percent of votes cast while Everett, a one-term sheriff, garnered 30 percent.

Schrader, who has worked at the police department for two years and spent 17 years at the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office, won nearly half of the votes on the Democratic ballot in the July 31 primary election. Three other candidates, including Everett, also were on the ballot.

He didn’t return calls seeking comment Tuesday night.

With 861 fewer voters casting ballots in the runoff, Schrader still won with 2,382 votes and will go on to the November election to face Republican candidate Jamie Dawson.

Everett, who also didn’t return calls seeking comment, has been known for his tough approach on department operations. He has fired several deputies as well as supervisors since 2008 for a range of offenses, including one supervisor showing up at a crime scene with alcohol on his breath.

He currently faces a federal civil suit. A North Georgia couple alleges Everett allowed one of his detectives to deceive a judge into signing a search warrant and that there was a history of using illegal search warrants.

Everett, who has said the search was legitimate, told The Summerville News the suit was a political ploy.

about Joy Lukachick Smith...

Joy Lukachick Smith is the city government reporter for the Chattanooga Times Free Press. Since 2009, she's covered crime and court systems in North Georgia and rural Tennessee, landed an exclusive in-prison interview with a former cop convicted of killing his wife, exposed impropriety in an FBI-led, child-sex online sting and exposed corruption in government agencies. Earlier this year, Smith won the Malcolm Law Memorial Award for Investigative Reporting. She also won first place in ...

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