A retired physicist has thrown his hat into the increasingly packed ring of contenders for Kerr County sheriff.
Warren Funk, a resident of Hunt, announced his intention to run on the Libertarian Party ticket.
Unlike the other citizens who have announced, Funk has never been a sworn peace officer.
Although it’s unusual for people without peace officer licenses to attain the office, the certification is not required. However, sheriffs who do not hold peace officer licenses are required to undergo continuing education, according to 85.0025 of the Texas Local Government Code. Qualifications for the office of sheriff are established in Sec. 85.011.
“In our lifetimes, we have seen a significant and unfortunate separation between the people and law enforcement,” Funk’s press release states. “I grew up when the police were our friends, safe to approach with any problem or concern. Today, the prudent citizen will first wonder if it is safe to involve law enforcement in their lives. This is unfair to the great majority of law enforcement professionals, but law enforcement is the problem often enough that caution is warranted. Someone steeped in law enforcement experience may not be able to make this shift.”
In the release, Funk said the office of sheriff exists not just to enforce laws, but to protect liberty.
“In county government, it is the office of sheriff that can do the most for the protection of our rights as sovereign citizens,” the release states. “This, sadly, is a fact more honored in the breach than the observance. I offer my service to the citizens of Kerr County as your sheriff to fix this. Under my direction, protection and preservation of your natural rights will become the main job of office and staff.”
Funk, in the release, said he’s been married “for more than 50 years to my very best friend,” and they have “two strong and intelligent sons who have married beautiful Texas girls and given us four delightful and accomplished grandchildren.”
Funk also is chair of the Kerr County Libertarian Party. He’s the only person from that party to announce his intention to run. The Libertarian Party is expected to make its nominations at a convention in March, said Nadine Alford, county elections coordinator.
Funk isn’t the only Libertarian candidate for sheriff in Texas who doesn’t hold a peace officer license. According to the Weatherford Democrat and social media postings, Russell Hess, a former gun store owner who is in the shipping container business, is running for the office of Parker County sheriff.
Alford said the filing deadline for the various 2020 races is Dec. 9. Other offices up for grabs include tax assessor-collector, Precinct 1 and 3 commissioners, county clerk, all four constables, county attorney, 216th district judge and both district attorneys.