Local News

Former Sheriff Not Endorsing Son in Primary

(La Porte County, IN) - A former La Porte County Sheriff is not endorsing his son, who’s running for the same position.


Instead, Jim Arnold supports Al Ott, who’s currently the Jail Commander at the La Porte County Sheriff’s Office. Ott seeks the Democratic Party nomination in the May primary against James D. Arnold and Andy Hynek.


Arnold said he has supported the Ott campaign but went public with his endorsement today because people thought he was running for sheriff.


“I have been deluged with phone calls, people stopping me on the street, calling the house wanting to know if they can have a sign, wanting to know if they can make a contribution,” Arnold said. “The only way to eliminate this and to clear this up is to let people know that it is not I who is running for sheriff."

Arnold said Ott is the most qualified candidate mainly because of his administrative experience and leadership ability he feels none of the other democrat candidates have at such a level.


He said the most critical aspect of running the sheriff’s office is the jail because of how large of an operation it is, and Ott was very successful in operating the jail in his over four years as jail commander.


“Almost half of the sheriff’s department employees work in the jail operation.  I can’t say enough about the job that he’s done,” Arnold said.

Arnold said his son is not ready to be sheriff at this point in his career, and Ott is ready now.


“My son, bless him, he someday may be qualified, and he may seek that office and win that office of sheriff, who knows. I’m not here to criticize any of them, but I know who stands head and shoulders above all of them,” Arnold said.

James D. Arnold began working in the jail in 1999 and has worked in the patrol division since 2001. He is currently the day shift commander of the patrol division.


After serving two terms as sheriff, his father, Jim Arnold, served 12-years as a state senator and now is a member of the La Porte School Board. Jim Arnold’s father, Cliff Arnold, was also sheriff for two terms, a state senator, and a two-term mayor in Michigan City. 

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