Sheriff keeps his job

Parnell McNamara was re-elected as county sheriff Tuesday. He received 66.31 percent of the total votes in McLennan County as of 11:28 p.m.

Willie Tompkins and Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton were also running on the Republican ticket. There was no Democratic candidate. Tompkins had 2.34 percent of the votes and Swanton had 31.35 percent of the votes.

“Regardless of what happens tonight, my family just got bigger,” Swanton said at his watch party at The Olive Branch restaurant in downtown Waco.

The Elect Swanton for McLennan County Sheriff Campaign held the watch party and over 70 people attended.

McNamara held his watch party at Manny’s On the River Tex-Mex restaurant. He had entertainment from Mack Abernathy and Friends with special guest Jonna May. The restaurant was packed and McNamara was warmly greeted when he arrived.

“I’d like to tell [the voters] how appreciative I am and how honored I am to be sheriff,” McNamara said. “I put in almost 33 years with the United States marshal, and the government hired me. As sheriff, the people hired me. The sheriff is the people’s voice in law enforcement. “

Jan Foster is a Waco resident and helped on McNamara’s campaign. At the watch party she helped pass out McNamara memorabilia. She was asked to help by McNamara’s wife, Charlotte.

“I think McNamara deserves this nomination because his family has been in law enforcement here for probably half a century and he is very committed to this county,” Foster said.

McNamara is a Baylor alumnus who graduated from Baylor in 1969 with a business degree.

“I am so proud to be from Waco,” McNamara said. “I am so proud of Baylor University and the strides that they’ve made in the last few years and just always been proud to be a Baylor alumni, and being able to serve the people in law enforcement in my own community has been wonderful.”

Tompkins was not available for comment.