Summit County reelects Jaime FitzSimons as sheriff

Chris Scherr, left, and Jaime FitzSimons, right. Both are running for Summit County sheriff.
Courtesy photos

Summit County voters have once again decided to put their trust in Jaime FitzSimons as sheriff of Summit County.

Like in 2018, FitzSimons came into the 2022 general election as the Democratic Party nominee and as the incumbent. This year, he faced off against unaffiliated candidate Chris Scherr, a current Dillon Police Department officer.

Although the race between the two candidates appeared to be close when the polls closed at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, by the end of the night it was clear that Summit County wanted to stick with FitzSimons.

“The overwhelming support from Summit County is tremendous,” FitzSimons said. “I look forward to the next four years. We have a lot of work to do as a community.”

As of 9:30 p.m., FitzSimons garnered 7,775 votes, which is 65.34% of the reported votes, while Scherr received 4,124 votes for a total of 34.66%.

FitzSimons offered words of thanks to everyone who supported him throughout the campaign on election night.

“I have had tremendous support since my first race in 2016, and we have made some incredible accomplishments with the community,” FitzSimons said. “I expect to do even more with the community in the next four years.”

FitzSimons was originally appointed sheriff in 2016 following former Sheriff John Minor’s departure to head the Silverthorne Police Department. From the onset of FitzSimons’ tenure as sheriff, he has focused on limiting the number of people suffering from mental health illnesses being placed in jail. 

Throughout his 2022 campaign, FitzSimons openly spoke about the work he has done to better the Summit County community. Whether it be through building relationships with the community or by trying to address the opioid epidemic, FitzSimons was adamant that he has Summit County’s best interests in mind.

“We will continue to work with all of those things and will discover what other opportunities are out there on the horizon,” FitzSimons said of building relationships and the opioid epidemic.

FitzSimons is originally from Los Angeles, where he grew up before he started his career in law enforcement at the Los Angeles Police Department in 1990. With the Los Angeles Police Department, FitzSimons served as a patrol sergeant and detective along with other work in the gang and undercover narcotics unit. 

In 2006, FitzSimons originally started with the Summit County Sheriff’s Office where he quickly rose through the ranks while also serving as a member of the Summit County Combined SWAT Team. 

Beyond serving as Summit County’s Sheriff, FitzSimons is also involved on several local boards including Building Hope, the TreeTop Child Advocacy Center and the Colorado Commission for Adult Offender Supervision. 

Scherr entered the race with years of experience in public safety, starting his career as a firefighter in New Jersey before becoming a ski patroller at Copper Mountain and working at St. Anthony Summit Hospital. 

Becoming an officer in 2014, Scherr started his career in law enforcement with the Dillon Police Department. 

Despite speaking out about wanting to increase policing to decrease crime, Scherr was not able to garner enough votes to defeat FitzSimons. 

“I have no comment other than, whether you voted for me or not, whether you were my opponent or not, I am everybody’s sheriff,” FitzSimons said. “I always have been, and I always will be.”

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