Jun 16, 2014 8:46 PM by Greg Dingrando
Petition signatures are pouring in to get Sheriff Terry Maketa removed from office.
A group against the sheriff got approval for the petition on Friday and they're frantically working to get 44,000 signatures to get a recall vote put on the November ballot.
The group just started collecting signatures over the weekend and they're already were up to 1,700. The deadline for signatures is in July so they have a long way to go in a short amount of time, but organizers are confident they'll reach they're goal of about 50,000 which is 6,000 more than needed.
Organizers,including a former deputy, said with Maketa refusing to resign despite the multiple accusations its absolutely necessary. They said it's the sheriff's own apology that pushed them to get the petition started.
"Its not a matter of being accused, he has admitted that he did wrong in the interview with his employees. After that interview there's no doubt in my mind that those things happened," said Francis, a retired sheriff's deputy.
And based on what they've seen so far, they're not alone.
"Its been going fantastic. We've had a tremendous amount of people signing these petitions and wanting to sign," said Francis.
Some residents we spoke with had no problem signing the petition.
"If it was anyone else breaking the law or do something we wouldn't want them to ride it out and go into the sunset. We would want some justice or action right now," said Antonio.
But not everyone agrees.
Maketa is term limited so he'll be out of office no matter what in January, meaning they're fighting over about two months.
"For a two month window, I don't think its worth it," said one voter.
But supporters said with the types of controversy surrounding the Sheriff, its more than worth it.
"Even if we cut him 30 days short, that's 30 days the public doesn't have to put up with this administration," said Francis.
Then there's the issue of cost. Some critics said the petition is a waste of money, but supporters said that's just not true.
"This is not a special election for this. Its regular November election that has to be held anyway so this will not cost public nothing for this petition," said Francis.
Another reason behind this petition is to put added pressure on Maketa to resign.
If they get it put on the ballot, the sheriff would be notified, and supporters hope its enough to get him to step down and if that's the case it would be immediate. However, Maketa has said on multiple occasions that he's not going anywhere.
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