Western Nebraska Observer - Observations all along the line - Kimball & the Southern Panhandle First

Sheriff Candidates Say Their Piece

It's Incumbent Gillway Vs. Challenger Hottell In The May 10 Primary

Series: HOTTELL | Story 1

March 31, 2022


The statewide primary election is Tuesday, May 10, and polls will be open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. in Kimball.

In the primary, voters registered as Republicans vote for the Republican candidates and registered Democrats vote for the Democratic candidates.

In Kimball County, two individuals are running as Republicans in the sheriff's race, and only one will advance past the primary to the November election. The two candidates are incumbent Harry Gillway and challenger David Hottell. No Democrats seek the office.

The Observer asked both candidates questions to inform the readers about the upcoming sheriff's race. Their answers are included in this report.

– Daria Anderson-Faden

Dave Hotell

My decision to run for Kimball County's Sheriff was based on the tremendous amount of encouragement from the community. Many in the community as well as myself see that there needs to be changes in the Sheriff's Office. I will work for the citizens of Kimball County and with the expected growth of our community the next sheriff needs to work proactively and diligently to serve and protect the community. I am running because I believe Kimball County needs a full-time sheriff. I also believe there should be a focus on community partnerships, working with EMS, fire fighters and other law enforcement agencies to better serve Kimball County. I will strive to have a Sheriff's Office that is strengthened through training, staff development, retention, and community interaction.

I will bring honesty and integrity to the Sheriff's Office, and this is not something that can be taught through any number of certifications. I will have a Sheriff's Office that is transparent and strives to make sure that the spending is on the things that best suit the county and take the concerns of the citizens seriously. I will have a Sheriff's Office that is not based on what it can get away with or harbors criminal or drug activity. I have 11 years' experience being a first responder. I started as a first responder in Campbell County, Wyoming, where I was on the fire department and on a mine rescue team. When I moved back to Kimball, I helped with the ambulance service until I started with the Kimball County Sheriff's Office. I was deputy with the Sheriff's Office for over three years where I had a tremendous amount of dedication.

I see the office of the sheriff as not only one that keeps law and order but also upholds the Constitution of the United States. Many of the rights that are protected in the Constitution seem to be under attack not only the 2nd Amendment but also the 1st Amendment and all the other amendments. It is scary to me that people want to silence the opinions that they do not agree with. It is scary to me that in this country people were told they couldn't go to church, yet riots were happening everywhere. With the rights of the Constitution being under attack, it bothers me as I wonder if our children will grow up with the freedoms that I had when I grew up.  Our forefathers fought and died for the freedoms that we give up so quickly. We need a sheriff that is willing to fight for our constitutional rights that are protected in the constitution. 

When it comes to crime, each area of the county has its own types of crimes. In my opinion, the one that deserves the most attention are the illegal drugs in Kimball County. Many of the other crimes such as theft can be directly related to the use of illegal drugs. The access to the illegal drugs is particularly important to me.  However, in other parts of the county, the crimes that need to be addressed are different. Such as Dix has its own problems that will be addressed if I am elected. It is unacceptable to have people getting harassed all the time, and as the citizens in Dix know, I will not tolerate it. I will make it a priority to protect the citizens of Kimball County as a sheriff as I did as a deputy. I will not tell my deputies that they cannot investigate felony crimes. I will listen to the concerns of the citizens of the community to see what they believe to be problems in their areas and address them likewise, as Bushnell and rural areas of our county will have different problems than the problems in Dix or the town of Kimball.

I am the only candidate for sheriff that owns property in Kimball County and whose children are living in Kimball County. Myself and my wife of 18 years are raising our 5 children in Kimball County. With the projected growth in Kimball, it is important to have a sheriff that will be dedicated and has invested interest in Kimball County as leadership in the Sheriff's Office affects me and my family as much as it does you and your family.  I will have the same full-time dedication as sheriff as I did as a deputy.


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