Touting his Rockdale roots and law enforcement experience, deputy Eric Levett recently announced his bid for Rockdale County Sheriff on the Democratic ticket.
Levett, 39, was born in the county and attended Rockdale County public schools. His family owns and operates the Levett Funeral Home and Crematory.
Although this is his first run for elected office, Levett said he set a goal of one day running for Sheriff when he began his law enforcement career. But he hadn’t expected to pursue that goal so soon.
“Our current sheriff, he is a good leader,” said Levett. He said one of the first people he told about his decision to run was Sheriff Jeff Wigington.
“However due to the trend in this community now, people are looking for something a little different,” Levett said. He said he heard from many in the community who were looking for a change from the sheriff's office.
“I’ve decided to run because I believe I can forge a new level of service to the citizens of Rockdale County,” he said.
Levett described his platform as one of “safety, professionalism, and accountability.”
On the list of his goals would be to hold an audit to address tight budgets with the aim of giving deputies raises, holding more Sheriff’s town halls, and provide more training, especially for the COPS division, and technology for the crime scene investigations division. He said he would be engaged and visible in the community if he were elected Sheriff.
He pledged to work with all county departments, local law enforcement agencies and also with the citizens to accomplish the goal of making Rockdale County safer.
He reflected on the changes he's seen over the years. “I remember when you were walking down the road, you didn’t have to worry about being robbed or someone coming up and bullying you or jumping on you. You could leave your cars unlocked, and your (house) doors were unlocked. I don’t think one person can change that but you can put a dent in it.”
“I want to send a very clear, strong and unwavering message to the non-law abiding citizens: I will be tough on crime and I will make this community safer,” he said in a released statement.
Inspired by family members in law enforcement, including his grandfather, George Levett, Sr., one of the first certified police officers for the city of Conyers, Levett was part of the RCSO Explorer program in high school and began his career as a dispatcher in the Rockdale County Emergency/911 Center. He moved on to work as a Rockdale County jail deputy, graduated from the Fulton County Police Academy, worked for other agencies including the Stone Mountain Park Police and Conyers Housing Authority before returning to Rockdale. In the RCSO, he worked with various divisions, including the Community Oriented Policing (COPS) division and Criminal Investigations, working his way to the rank of Sergeant.
Levett and his wife Lavette have been married for 15 years and have two sons, a 3-year-old and an 8-year-old who attends Lorraine Elementary.
Levett said he attends Springfield Baptist Church, although he is not a member.
A kickoff event for Levett’s campaign will be held Sunday April 1, 4 p.m. – 6 p.m., at Creolaise Ballroom and Bistro, 1161 Old Salem Road, Conyers.