Sheriff’s elections decided by less than 30 votes


SULLIVAN, Ind. (WTHI) Tuesday night’s election had several close finishes including razor thin margins for one county’s sheriff races.

A welcome calm descended on the Sullivan county courthouse Wednesday. One day after one of the closest races in the Wabash Valley closed out.

That race was the primary election for Sullivan County’s Democrat and Republican sheriff nominations.

“I was up, then I was down then I came back up and then it went to final precinct coming in,” Republican nominee Patrick Fulford said.

“I was actually behind for a little bit early on but it started leveling out and started climbing and gaining momentum,” Democrat candidate Clark Cottom said.

How close was the election? Less than 30 people could have decided either race. 24 voters decided it for Cottom.

“I figured it was gonna be close a lot of people were predicting it was gonna be a close race just because of the quality of the individuals that were running for sheriff,” he said.

But the other race was even less for Fulford.

“It was a nice race it was clean. I won by 11 votes,” he explained.

When the race comes down to that close a margin there is a chance there could be a recount. We met with the Sullivan county clerk to find out if these races could see one as well.

She said first the candidate would have to pay a cash bond per precinct to recount.

“Then you have a recount commission, which is appointed, if you lose the recount I think you are responsible for all the payment,” Sullivan County Clerk Peggy Goodman said.

In her time in the clerk’s office Goodman said she’s only seen one recount since 1994. So far none of the other candidates have planned to change that trend. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you confirm your email address and acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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