Candidates Emerge for L.A. County Sheriff After Baca Announces Retirement

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Possible replacements for Lee Baca were emerging Wednesday, one day after the Los Angeles County sheriff announced his sudden retirement after serving for 15 years.

Paul Tanaka, Bob Olmsted and Todd Rodgers are three possible candidates to become the next L.A. County sheriff. (Credit: KTLA)

Candidates who had already tossed their hats into the race before Baca’s surprising announcement included former L.A. County Undersheriff Paul Tanaka and former Cmdr. Bob Olmsted.

L.A. County Assistant Sheriff Todd Rogers had also stated his intention Monday to file paperwork and enter the race. Another assistant sheriff who said he was also considering a run for the office was Jim Hellmond.

Other possible candidates outside the sheriff’s department included Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell and LAPD Deputy Chief Terry Hara, the Los Angeles Times reported. McDonnell said he would make a decision about entering the race soon.

Candidates would have until March to formally declare for the race.

Primaries for the office were scheduled to be held this coming June, while the general election was slated for November.

The five-member L.A. County Board of Supervisors was expected to appoint an interim sheriff to replace Baca. They would have 90 days to make their choice.

Baca has recommended that Assistant Sheriff Terri McDonald, the head of jails, be named interim sheriff until one is elected, according to the Times.

KTLA’s Eric Spillman contributed to this report.

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