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Early Returns Show L.A. County Sheriff Jim McDonnell With Lead Over Challenger Alex Villanueva in Rare Runoff Election

Left, L.A. County Sheriff Jim McDonnell, and, right, retired sheriff's Lt. Alex Villanueva, are seen during interviews in October 2018. (Credit: KTLA)

Left, L.A. County Sheriff Jim McDonnell, and, right, retired sheriff's Lt. Alex Villanueva, are seen during interviews in October 2018. (Credit: KTLA)

Early returns show Jim McDonnell leading in his reelection bid as Los Angeles County Sheriff, with many votes still remaining to be counted.

McDonnell so far scored 58% of the vote, with his challenger, retired Sheriff’s Lt. Alex Villanueva at 42%, according to preliminary results, drawing mainly from mail-in ballots.

Leading into the election, the contest to run one of the nation’s largest law enforcement agencies had been expected to be close.

Sheriffs in Los Angeles County can typically count on being easily reelected in the primary, but Villanueva disrupted that pattern when he became one of only four challengers in the last century to push a sitting sheriff into a runoff.

Read the full story LATimes.com.