Steve Rachal announces candidacy for sheriff

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To the citizens of Natchitoches Parish: My name is Steve Rachal. I am officially announcing my candidacy for Sheriff of Natchitoches Parish.

I was born and raised in Natchitoches Parish and the majority of my family still reside and work in this parish. I am married to Karen Rachal and we have 7 children and 9 grandchildren. My children and grandchildren attend school in Natchitoches Parish. I began my career in law enforcement in 1985 when I was hired as a part-time (Civil Defense) Deputy Sheriff for Natchitoches Parish. It didn’t take me long to realize that I wanted a career in law enforcement.

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A few months later, I was hired as a full-time Natchitoches Police Officer where I worked for approximately one year. In 1986, I was hired as a Deputy in the Patrol Division by Sheriff Norm Fletcher. I worked there for four years until 1990, when I was hired by the Louisiana State Police. Upon graduating the State Police Academy I served Natchitoches Parish as a resident Trooper until 1999 when I was promoted to Detective. During my career with the State Police I was on the SWAT Team for 8 years. In 20011 was promoted to Sergeant in the Bureau of Investigations where I worked until my retirement in 201l. After my promotion in 2001, I worked in the Gaming Section in a supervisory role. I left the Gaming Section for an assignment in the Special Crimes Unit overseeing Troopers in the investigation and apprehension of child predators.

I worked as a Detective Sergeant in the Bureau of Investigations Detective Division, then later the State Police Intelligence Unit, until my retirement. As a Trooper, I was also a commissioned Deputy United States Marshal and assisted in the Fugitive Apprehension Task Force. My intention as the next Sheriff of Natchitoches Parish is to improve service to the citizens of Natchitoches Parish by putting in place measures to ensure faster response times to calls for service, and to ensure that complainants are kept informed of the progress of investigations in a timely manner. I pledge to attack the drug problem head-on that is so prevalent in our parish. My narcotics unit will work to get the dealers out of our parish and away from our children!

I want to have a very close working relationship with the Natchitoches Parish District Attorney’s Office to ensure that dealers are prosecuted and people with drug addictions have an opportunity for help. To the drug dealers preying on our parish: This is a promise from me to you. Go deal your drugs somewhere else. If you choose to deal drugs in Natchitoches Parish be prepared to face the consequences! To the men and women of the Parish Sheriff’s Department, both Patrol and Investigations: Let me be very clear before the rhetoric starts. I am not trying to get elected to fire everybody. You are hard working people with families to support and I understand that.

I went through more than one election when I was a Deputy and understand how you feel. If you are qualified for the position you are assigned, you have nothing to worry about. As a matter of fact it is time that you are properly compensated for the work you do because you are the backbone of the Sheriff’s Department. You are the first line of defense for the citizens of this parish. I will not hold pay raises over your heads to get your loyalty. You will know that you are appreciated and will have all necessary equipment to do your job as efficiently and safely as possible.

When I am elected as the next Sheriff of Natchitoches Parish you will have a Sheriff that you can be proud to call “Your Sheriff”. I will have an open door policy and it will be open for ALL of you. I pledge to be involved in your communities and we will work together to make Natchitoches Parish a place that is safe to raise our families. I would love to hear your questions or concerns. Contact me at 318-527-9021 or steverachalforsheriff@gmail.com.

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