BLADEN COUNTY, NC (WWAY) -- The sudden changes in the Bladen County Sheriff's Office are catching the attention of people who live there. Tonight, many are fired up and speaking out. The majority of people we ran into in Elizabethtown knew about the recent sheriffs office shake up. Many of them including tourist disagree on the move to cut down the force.
"I was shocked. I was appalled," Sharon Dawson said. "I think its the most ridiculous thing to happen."
Dawson may just be visiting Bladen County, but she's heard all about the interim sheriff's decision to not swear in five deputies Tuesday.
"To lose their jobs in an hour notice, that's horrible, but to do that in your tourist season is ridiculous," she said.
As for the people who live in Bladen County, they're speaking out too.
"I think it's terrible," Linda Davis said. "I was very upset yesterday when I found out about what had happened to the five deputies."
Davis has lived in Bladen County for more than 20 years. She's seen changes within the county, but none like what's recently been seen.
"Some of my friends, myself included, we're embarrassed for this county," she said. "I'm embarrassed to say I'm from Bladen County. Didn't used to be like that Sunday, but I am today."
Davis says she's can't believe what the acting sheriff has done. The move has even forced her to step aside this upcoming election season.
"I have cherished my right to vote for 43 years, and that right has been taken away from me this election, because I will not vote for the sheriff in November," Davis said.
We also called the sheriff candidates up for election in November to see what they think about the situation. Billy Ward said he'll let county officials worry about what's going on, adding the focus should be on the residents and not the acting sheriff. As for Prentis Benston, we did not get a call back from his campaign manager Herman Dunn.