PERRY COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - Perry County voters went to the polls Tuesday and by the end of the night, they had a new sheriff elected. Mitch Nobles, 37, won the election with 55 percent of the vote against incumbent sheriff Jimmy Dale Smith, who received 45 percent of the vote.
"My first reaction was automatic," Nobles said. "I thank God for what he done for me and it's overwhelming, it's exciting is an understatement, you know. I'm very proud, mainly proud to come back home to my county, to Perry County, to be able to serve the people of Perry County. My focus and goals is what I first said at the very beginning of this election process is that I want to work on and improve the image of our county with professionalism and integrity."
Nobles has 18 years of law enforcement experience, including eight years in criminal investigation. Nobles worked at the Perry County Sheriff's Department as well as the Petal Police Department.
He is the first republican elected Sheriff in Perry County and his reaction to Tuesday night's race was a positive one.
Smith has been in law enforcement for over 26 years.
"You know when God closes one door, he opens another one so I'm looking forward to it," Smith said. "But I don't know, I haven't really made any plans other than spend some time with my family and grandchildren and I haven't been hunting in ages, and I think I'm going to take that up and possibly go fishing in a little bit."