Sheriff Bob says he’ll run for office again | AspenTimes.com

Sheriff Bob says he’ll run for office again

Allyn Harvey
Aspen Times Staff Writer

Pitkin County’s top cop said yesterday that he intends to run for re-election this fall.

Longtime Sheriff Bob Braudis said a big part of his decision was based on his enjoyment in coming to work 99 days out of 100. He also wants to ensure that the style of policing that he has helped foster remains in effect for another four years.

“I want to keep prioritizing the compassionate and humane style of law enforcement that the community has expressed it wants for a long, long time,” Braudis said.

Braudis is noted for taking a somewhat more relaxed approach to law enforcement than many of his colleagues, which has created a generally congenial relationship between the sheriff’s office and the general public.

Pitkin County is not known for aggressive enforcement of drug laws, for instance. But that fact allows the sheriff’s department to focus its resources on other priorities, such as search and rescue and property crimes, Braudis said.

“One of the biggest challenges of my job is to maintain the status quo, to keep things as they are,” he said.

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Braudis, who was first elected in 1986, is seeking a fifth term in office. He is allowed to do so because voters repealed term limits in 2000 for sheriff, clerk and recorder and assessor.

So far, no one except Aspen City Councilman Tony Hershey has expressed an interest in challenging Braudis. Hershey first expressed interest in the sheriff’s job in 2000, prior to the election that repealed term limits. But Hershey, whose father Martin Hershey served as Aspen’s police chief in the 1970s and 1980s, reconsidered last fall.

“I congratulate him and wish him luck,” Hershey said. “I assume no one is going to run against him – I think anyone would lose if they did. There isn’t a more popular elected official than Sheriff Bob Braudis.”

Braudis, who is 57, said he thought briefly about retiring and traveling, but decided the trip could wait another four years. If he is re-elected, Braudis’ term would run through 2006.