LEESBURG — David Cheshire says he wants to clear up some misinformation being spread by supporters of Lee County Sheriff Reggie Rachals, and Cheshire says he’d like to do so publicly.
Cheshire, who was a lieutenant with the Lee Sheriff’s Office under Rachals before resigning in December to announce he would run for the office, challenged Rachals to “any type of public forum he’d like” as their July 31 Republican Primary showdown approaches.
“It doesn’t necessarily have to be a debate,” Cheshire said of his challenge offer Wednesday. “I’d just like to meet with Sheriff Rachals in some type of public forum where we both can discuss the issues that are important to this race.
“The Leesburg American Legion offered to have such a forum earlier this month, but Sheriff Rachals did not respond to their request. I think the taxpayers of Lee County deserve to hear what we both have to say.”
Contacted about Cheshire’s challenge, Rachals said he had no interest in any such forum.
“That’s not something I feel like I need to do,” the sheriff said. “I really don’t have the time. I feel that I’ve done enough in my almost four years in office to run this campaign on my record.”
Cheshire said he’s not heard of Rachals spreading misinformation about his opponent during the campaign, but that supporters of the incumbent sheriff had made claims that were patently false.
“Some people have told me that some of Sheriff Rachals’ supporters told them I was planning to decrease the number of deputies patrolling in the county if I’m elected,” Cheshire said. “That’s just not true. In fact, one of my campaign platforms is to revamp the department so that we have more deputies patrolling the county. I’m all about the uniform division.”