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Hunter takes county sheriff seat

LINING UP: Miami County residents stand in line at the Miami County Courthouse to place their votes in the 2018 midterm elections.

Brian Powers - bpowers@perutribune.com

After months of waiting and speculating, Miami County has decided Tim Hunter will be its newest sheriff.

Hunter, a current deputy for the Miami County Sheriff’s Department, was the Republican candidate for the office in the competition to take over the role for retiring incumbent sheriff Tim Miller, received just shy of 70 percent of Miami County’s votes.

Hunter defeated his challenger Peru Police Department Chief Mike Meeks, who ran on an Independent platform and garnered 30 percent of votes.

According to Miami County's First Deputy of Voter Registration Mary Kaye Jones, a quarter of voters turned up for early voting, but the polls were still busy throughout Election Day, with a total of 10,513 of the 20,230 registered voters showing up— just shy of 52 percent total.

“It’s been really smooth,” Jones said. “A lot of people hadn’t updated their addresses so there’s been a lot of address changes.”

Jones said the addresses were the biggest hiccup— a welcome relief to other Indiana counties that experienced heavy setbacks with their systems.

Besides the race to elect a new Miami County Sheriff, the county voted in all Republicans when possible.

Current Miami County Council President Ethan Manning took 70 percent of votes to take over for retiring State Representative Bill Friend. Manning defeated Democrat Terry Doran (25 percent) and Libertarian Adam Werner (4 percent) candidates for the seat.

Miami County also voted for Republican Candidate Mike Braun to represent them in the U.S. Senate race, netting 67 percent of votes. Democratic incumbent Joe Donnelly received 27 percent of the votes and Libertarian Candidate Lucy Brenton received 5 percent.

In the final federal election aspect, Miami County gave their votes for the U.S. Congress seat to current sitting Republican Jackie Walorski, who defeated Democratic candidate Mel Hall in a 71 percent- 28 percent matchup.