Incumbent Bryan County Sheriff Bill Sturch, who was first elected in 1992, is seeking re-election. Democratic challengers are Roy Brown and Mike Russell.
Brown is retired from the Oklahoma Highway Patrol and is a former Durant police chief. Russell was the chief of the Choctaw Nation Tribal Police and is currently police chief for Caddo Mills, Texas.
The candidates spoke Monday evening at the courthouse lawn during an event held by the Bryan County Democratic party. There will be a runoff Aug. 26 if no candidate receives more than 50 percent of the votes.
The winner will face Republican challenger Paul Conley in the November general election.
According to the Bryan County Election Board, more than 150 people participated in early voting. Figures for absentee voting were not available.
Three other county officers, District No. 2 Commissioner Tony Simmons; County Clerk Pat Brady, and Court Clerk Sandy Stroud, were up for re-election this year. All three were unopposed.
Also up for re-election and unopposed is local State Rep. John Carey.
Residents of Colbert Boat Club will be voting on whether to incorporate as the town of Boat Club.
Also today, there are Democratic and Republican primaries for U.S. senator, a Democratic primary for U.S. representative and a Republican primary for short-term corporation commissioner.
Polls opened at 7 a.m. today and will close at 7 p.m.
Results of the sheriff’s primary will be posted this evening on the Democrat’s Web site, www.durantdemocrat.com.