Luther Sodat sworn in
By Caitlin Davis, Senior Staff Writer
Jan 9, 2014, 15:24
CAITLIN DAVIS/HOPEWELL NEWS/NEWS-PATRIOT Luther Sodat takes his oath to become the new sheriff of Hopewell. Judge W. Allen Sharrett swears Sodat into office.
HOPEWELL — As of the first of the year, the city now has a new sheriff.
After clinching the Nov. elections with 47 percent of the votes, Luther Sodat Jr. placed his right hand on bible Dec. 17 and took his oath and got a new badge placed on his uniform.
With Judge W. Allen Sharrett and Judge Nathan Lee presiding, Sodat took over the duties from retiring sheriff Greg Anderson.
“…And perform all of the duties incumbent upon me as sheriff for the city of Hopewell according to the best of my abilities, so help me God,” Sodat said. As the last words feel out and with a word of congratulations from Sharrett, the crowd, which filled the Circuit Court, broke into a standing ovation.
“I’m extremely proud of this young man here,” Anderson said. “…This guy earned this job. He worked hard. He’s going to be a wonderful sheriff. I’m so proud of him. I just can’t tell you how proud I am of him. He’s going to carry on this great tradition.”
For Sodat, he plans to continue implementing the I-295 safety program, which was started by Sheriff Anderson and has netted the city millions since it was started. Sodat said the program has proven effective for the city. Though Sodat has learned much from Sheriff Anderson, and worked in the sheriff’s office for almost 25 years, there are some changes he wants to bring to the office.
“I also plan to implement a community service deputy to work with the elderly and youth, and to strengthen the auxiliary deputy program to work on additional projects. ... I am looking into a firearms safety course to help citizens obtain concealed weapons permits,” Sodat stated in a questionnaire.
As Sodat’s wife, Lynn, pinned the badge on his uniform and applause rang out in the courtroom, Sodat gave those in attendance words of gratitude.
“Everybody in this room is special, all of you,” Sodat said. “As the Sheriff said I have such a good team and most of them are here and I appreciate everything. I have good family, friends, and support and I appreciate everything you all have done for me.”
Sheriff Anderson, who was presented with a retirement badge at the ceremony, steps down after eight years in office.