Sheriff Johnson Not Running for Reelection

Charlottesville Sheriff Cornelia Johnson won’t be running for reelection, CBS 19 reports. First elected in 1998, the former down beat cop became the city’s first black, female officer in 1976 and was only the second female sheriff in the whole of the state. Her third term wraps up at the end of this year.

Reader J.L. tells me that Capt. Mike Baird, who works for Johnson, will be running for the seat, announcing his candidacy on Friday at 11 AM at the circuit court.

32 Responses to “Sheriff Johnson Not Running for Reelection”


  • …that CPD Sgt. Ronnie Roberts, and perhaps CPD Sgt. Mike Farrugio, are both looking at the seat as well. Can anyone confirm if either rumor is true?

  • I hope that’s true. I like Ronnie just fine, but Mike (as a Republican) is somebody I’d cross party lines to support. Mike was in the Sorensen Institute’s 2006 Political Leaders class, which speaks well of him.

    Though, by way of disclaimer, I don’t know Mike Baird and I live in the county, not the city. :)

  • I know Mike from our work on the OAR board, I would support him regardless of his political party affiliation. Born and raised in Charlottesville and with the Sheriff’s office a long time. Good luck Mike!

  • I would support almost anybody EXCEPT Mike Baird. In my humble opinion, he wouldn’t be where he is now if a former sheriff (also known as his FATHER) hadn’t given him a job in the first place. Hired by his father, promoted by his father, etc….. Nepotism in it’s finest form. Right here in our beloved city! Wasn’t long after this the then City Manager Cole Hendrix changed city policy in reference to flagrant nepotism. I have a copy of the memo from Cole Hendrix laying right in front of me on my desk.

    Hopefully by the time the Democratic nominating covention is held locally, there will be several better applicants to choose from.

    I commend Cornelia for choosing to retire in the manner in which she did. In the prior decades before her winning the elecion for Sheriff, whatever”good ole boy” sheriff happened to be in office would step down early and allow somebody else to be hand picked and appointed interim sheriff by the Circuit Court until the election rolled around.

  • By the way, a $4 million dollar lawsuit against Mike Baird was very recently settled out of court too. It was a sealed non-disclosure settlement. The lawsuit is on file and available to view in the Charlottesville Circuit Court. I suppose the settlement can’t be viewed though. Pretty sure the taxpayers probably had to foot the bill.

  • Sick of the Local Shifflett

    Steve, Steve, Steve, we have all heard your rants before. Yes, you WERE a Sheriff’s Deputy in Charlottesville a long time ago. I forget how did that end??? Oh, that’s right. While dangerous felons were on trial in the Circuit Court where you were in charge of security you WENT TO SLEEP. We have been through this all before; now get back to badcops.com or whatever it is you read all day.

  • Sick of the Local Shifflett, deflecting attention from the issue at hand is so childish and boring. It’s pretty obvious you admit I spoke the truth above. Or you would have debated the issue, not the “Steve”. You know I would never make any libelous remarks in a public forum. Do you have any idea when the Democratic Nominating Convention takes place locally for this sheriff’s election? I and many other voters will be there to cast our votes for anybody EXCEPT Mike Baird. Setting aside all the rumor and speculation, there’s still a highly qualified African American candidate, a Charlottesville Police supervisor with an outstanding record of achievements, that should be announcing his candidacy and will get our support. Cheer up Sick of the Local Shifflett, this will be a very interesting election. In the meantime, maybe you and I could get together for a cheeseburger and beer at Riverside one evening. I can tell you all about how a now retired Albemarle Police captain responded to a disorder one night, had to physically start arresting drunk and disorderly individuals without any backup present whatsoever, and a certain deputy sheriff stood by and refused to back up this captain after being commanded to do so!

  • I will support Mike Baird or Mike Farrugio. They are both honest and capable men.

  • Wait this is not the famous Steve Shiflett? The deputy hired by Sheriff Edgar Robb, claimed in March 2003 that a black man had shot at him, unprovoked, hitting him in the torso and his patrol car. The police opened an investigation, Shiflett resigned. Results of the ballstics test and a polygraph of Shiflett by the Albemarle police were never been available.(as discussed in cvillenews)

    The same Steven Shifflett arrested for impersonation in Alexandria?
    According to police, Shifflett was driving a dark blue Ford Crown Victoria – a type of car commonly used by police – when he made a predawn traffic stop on Seminary Road late 2004. But the man he allegedly pulled over is a retired police officer who began asking questions, at which point the suspect drove away.

    “It bothers us that this guy is a Charlottesville resident and he’s in Alexandria at 5:30 in the morning on Dec. 16. Why? It begs the question why is this guy up in our area, and what’s he been doing, and how many people has he stopped before?” said Lt. John Crawford, an Alexandria Police spokesman.

    The same Steve Shiffett that C-ville once said about ” Shiflett had already earned a reputation as a rogue cop while working for the Louisa County Sheriff’s Department.”

    Please tell me you are not this guy

  • First off, please allow me to think you for your reply, GetOnTheRightFoot. It proves how a person’s name is still being dragged through the mud. This is very helpful.
    But anyhow, it’s absolutely amazing how some of you people come up with this foolishness. It’s obvious some of you will never cut it as a “detective” or “private investigator” anywhere. The “Steve Shifflett” never worked for Albemarle Sheriff Ed Robb, and he has never worked for the Louisa Sheriff’s Office. Since your investigative skills are lacking, I will fill in a few other blanks for you too. He was not the “Steve Shifflett” that worked at the UVA Police Department. He also was not the “Steve Shifflett” that worked at the local jail. He did work for the Charlottesville Sheriff’s Office for 22 years. And he did work for the Greene County Sheriff’s Office for several years after that. And he was the “steve Shifflett” that was falsely arrested for a crime in Alexandria, Virginia. False and misleading information from a Charlottesville police officer and a Charlottesville deputy sheriff falsely implicated him in the crime. The judge dismissed the false arrest before the “Steve Shifflett” had to utter one word of defense in the courtroom. Not one single word. The commonwealth put there case on, the judge saw something strange was taking place, and the judge dismissed the false arrest immediately. $4 million dollar alwsuits were then filed against Charlottsville deputy sheriff MIKE BAIRD, Charlottesville police officer Richard Hudson, an Alexandria captain, and the Alexandria rookie who claims she conducted a thorough and competent investigation of the crime. The lawsuit against MIKE BAIRD was recently settled out of court. The lawsuit against the two Alexandria officers will be heard in front of a jury this summer. The lawsuit against Richard Hudson will be heard shortly thereafter. Now let me add this as well… while this alleged investigation and false arrest of the “Steve Shifflett” was taking place, Alexandria would have been better off using their resources to investigate the murder of the wife of the then Alexandria Sheriff Dunning. They’re out here falsely arresting an innocent man for a misdemeanor while they should be searching for a murderer. If the Alexandria rookie wanted to make a name for herself by solving an infamous crime, maybe the murder should have been the one to concentrate her efforts on?? The murder has never been solved. This should tell you a little about Alexandria’s investigative skills. The victim in this traffic stop was not a retired cop. He served as a cop for 2 years over three decades ago. I think he was a janitor in a church? The suspect who performed the traffic stop on him was a 20-ish year old 5’8″ 140 pound hispanic male with black hair and mo mustache, driving a dark blue Crown Victoria which was a 1997 model or older according to the victim’s own testimony. Alexandria traveled 120 miles to falsely arrest a 52 year old white male, 5’11”, 220 pounds, graying hair with a mustache for the last 35 years, who has a much newer body style Crown Victoria, light blue in color. After having bought a new Cadillac, his light blue Crown Victoria had not been driven and was in storage for 6 months prior to the crime. The victim in the crime clearly described a Maryland Fraternal Order of Police license plate as being on the car that performed the traffic stop on him. The Alexandria rookie investigated it as if it was a Virginia Fraternal Order of Police license plate. I could go on for three hours, but the bottom line is it seems as if somebody for some reason was trying to make sure the “Steve Shifflett” had a criminal arrest record and a criminal arrest conviction. I wonder why that was? This same garbage was attempted when Louisa County Sheriff Ashland Fortune announced he was running for sheriff in his county. Now I ask you a question, I don’t know the answer, could it be somebody was afraid the “steve Shifflett” was going to run for as sheriff in Charlottesville. You really have me scratching my head now. Very interesting to say the least, eh? Hhmmm……

  • Ohh, by the way, did you also know that when the “Steve Shifflett” left the Charlottesville Sheriff’s Office in 1996, he told the then Sheriff Rittenhouse he had considered his options and might choose to run against Rittenhouse at the next Charlottesville sheriff’s election? As strange as it may seem, the “Steve Shifflett” was then immediately subjected to a series of false arrests as well, 5 criminal charges to be exact. One of the charges was “impersonating a Greene County deputy sheriff, when he was in fact a sworn deputy in Greene County. Even after Sheriff Morris confirmed his status as a sworn deputy sheriff in Greene County, they held the “Steve Shifflett” for 5 more hours trying to find a real crime to charge him with. Charlottesville Police Lt Bob Frazier (now deceased) refused to seek a search warrant and search the home of “steve Shifflett” to find a real crime. He had no probable cause of course, and he personally knew the “Steve Shifflett” to be a person of good character and reputation and refused to get involved in the “mistakes” that had already taken place. “Mistakes” is the key word there of course, interpret it as you wish. When all else had failed, and after Sheriff Morris had confirmed the identity of the “steve Shifflett” as a sworn deputy sheriff in Greene County, the cops still took him to the Magistrate’s Office and swore to the impersonation charge. Isn’t this strange? We know the drill, don’t we? No convictions of any sort, lawsuits filed, cops fought the lawsuits tooth and nail for 6 years, lawsuits settled as soon as the judge set a definite jury trial date to hear the lawsuits. I really have to wonder if somebody was trying to strap the “Steve Shifflett” with a criminal arrest record and criminal arrest convictions prior to the 1997 sheriff’s election in Charlottesville?

  • RumorHasIt, I totally overlooked the original question you asked. Sorry about that. The truth of the rumor depends on where Farrugio lives. You have to live in the city to be the city sheriff. Ronnie Roberts does not live in the City of Charlottesville. I doubt he would sell his home or move into the city just to run for sheriff. Unless he wants to enhance his retirement benefits of course (smart move none the less). The retirement benefits of a city employee are based upon their three highest yearly earnings, which of course is usually their last few years of employment. Roberts and Farrugio should both be on the old city retirement plan, which is a little better than the new retirment plan now offered to city employees. Either one could enhance their retirement benefits by serving as city sheriff for the last several years of their career. Several city police employees have already enhanced their retirement benefits in this manner…. Mannie Norford, Carlton Baird (now deceased), J W Rittenhouse, and Cornelia Johnson. Now the sad news. The position of city sheriff is the only high ranking law enforcement position an African American has been allowed to hold in Charlottesville and Albemarle County in recent history. After seeing who a city councilor and the commonwealth’s attorney are endorsing to be sheriff in the news today, it appears city leaders want to take a step backwards. President Barack Obama makes history while Charlottesville leaders want to take a step backwards. The African American community needs to get every member of their families out to register, vote in the Democratic Nominating Connvention locally, and and then vote in November. On the other hand though, if James Brown (or whoever else) ends up running as an Independent or Republican, and wins, I guess history would be made in Charlottesville too. I can’t recall the last time Charlottesville had an Independent or Republican sheriff.

  • Mike lives in the city, or at least he did three years ago.

  • Sounds like he’s eligible then. I hadn’t even thought about it, but I suppose to be on the City Planning Commission he has to be a city resident.

  • Mike Baird Supporter

    Wow! Mike Baird is a stand up citizen. He cares about what he does for the community and knows what the community needs.
    Demopublican…… Get a life…. get a job… hell, get a ladder and get over it. You obvoiusly have too much time on your hands.

  • Mike Baird Supporter, other than being hired as a deputy sheriff back somewhere around 1985 by his father who was sheriff at the time, and being promoted by his sheriff father, name some of Mike Baird’s qualifications and accomplishments for the last 23 years please. Tell us about his proir military service, did he ever serve his country? Tell us about his educational level, anything above and beyond a high school diploma to speak of? The floor is yours, try to impress us. His public announcement of candidacy didn’t impress me at all. Being the president of the local Fraternal Order of Police chapter’s building and grounds corporation is suppose to be impressive? Being a member of TRIAD makes him qualified to be city sheriff? I think you will pleasantly be surprised when the next sheriff’s candidate announces. An African America city police supervisor with prior military service to his country, a college education, and a long list of accomplishments and achievements to local law enforcement and the community. Can I convince you to vote for a much better qualified candidate? Once this candidate announces, I predict another Obama style upset. Unless the African American community wants to give up the only high ranking law enforcement position Charlottesville has ever allowed an African American to hold.

  • In my humble opinion it sounds like Steve is very immature and would say or do anything to try and ruin a good mans name. Baird for Sheriff.

  • Mike Baird Supporter

    Immature and bitter. I will pray for him.

  • After making a special trip to the city court and reading the lawsuits I think he opposite is true. It appears Mike Baird and a city cop conspired (and abused the authority of their badges) to put an innocent man in jail and ruin his name. That man was named Steven. Same person?

  • Demopublican sure does know a lot about Steve Shifflett to “not be” Steve Shifflett. The color of someone’s skin does not give them the better qualification…I thought this country was past that. Service to this community and dedication to their job makes for the better candidate. So “Demopublican” or “Sheriff” or whatever you call yourself these days, get a JOB. You have too much time on your hands to be so concerned about others. MIKE BAIRD FOR SHERIFF…

  • LikesMike#2, yes, service to the community and dedication to a job does make a better candidate. Of the two candidates that have announced so far, this is why I feel JAMES BROWN is the better qualified candidate. And the color of his skin is important because the city sheriff is the only high ranking law enforcement position Charlottesville has ever let an African American hold. Now the “good ole white boys” want the position back. A good ole boy who was hired into the sheriff’s office by ather who was sheriff at the time several decades ago. And a good ole boy who was promoted within the sheriff’s office by this sheriff who just happened to be his father. Yeah, that’s dedication for sure, a dedication to one’s family, not the community!
    As far as a job, I have all I want or need at the present time. I secured my financial well being many years ago at a young age. And as far as too much times on one’s hands, might I suggest you look into the recent technological advances for jumping onto the Internet from anywhere at any time. A submission to a forum or blog only takes 30 seconds from a cell phone, iPod Touch or a laptop.
    GO JAMES BROWN!!!

  • Sorry for the typo above. It was suppose to read…

    “A good ole boy who was hired into the sheriff’s office by his father who was sheriff at the time several decades ago.”

    I hate the keyboard on my micro-laptop!!! :)

  • Yes, Demopublican, you like to repeat yourself over and over and over like a broken record. Who cares how someone got started in his community service 23 years ago. The key thing is that he continues to serve this wonderful Charlottesville community today! Your service to Charlottesville stopped a long time ago. You haven’t given us one thing about James Brown that we should know…do you know anything about him other than what is in the newspaper or the internet? By the way, electing Obama was not an upset. We, the people, came together for the better of this country and voted for Obama, not because of the color of this skin. Sheriff Johnson has done a good job as Sheriff and I’m very pleased that she is a WOMAN that made it as Sheriff. Have you forgotten she is a WOMAN, not just african american…By the way, we know how you really make money. I will keep you in my prayers…you really need it!

  • LikesMike#2, believe it or not, we can agree on the woman thing. I wouldn’t mind seeing a female African American woman enter the race to replace Cornelia. At least we will still have one high ranking law enforcement position in this area we will continue to allow an African American to serve in, instead of handing it back to the “good ole white boys” who stand around slapping each other on the back. If not, there’s still a highly trained and qualified African American police supervisor who will be announcing his candidacy soon. He will impress the city residents, that I promise you.

    Now, back to Mike Baird, this works both ways. Even though it sounds good, instead of just repeating “service to the community”, please list Mike Baird’s accomplishments in the last 23 years. Accomplishments other than being hired by his father and promoted within the sheriff’s office by his father. His official press release simply said he wanted to be top dog now and make a few decisions within the department for a change. This statement wasn’t very impressive at all. Who the hell is his campaign manager for God’s sake? Wanting to climb Mount Everest doesn’t mean I will be good at it without quite a bit of prior experience, training and quaifications.

    Let’s list the qualifications of James Brown:
    *Has been serving Charlottesville/Albemarle over 15 years in the Criminal Justice field.
    *B.A. in Pre-Law from Longwood College in 1992.
    *Advanced Studies Diploma from Charlottesville High School in 1988.
    *Current Law Enforcement Officer with Albemarle County for over 5 years.
    *Pretrial Investigator/Case Manager and Probation Officer with OAR (Offender Aid and Restoration) for over 7 years.
    *Deputy Clerk with Albemarle District Court for 1 year.
    *Department of Criminal Justice Services Certified Instructor.
    *Thomas Jefferson Area Crisis Intervention Team Trainer.
    *Cultural Diversity Instructor.
    Spanish Interpreter. (Speaks, reads, and writes in Spanish.)
    *While in college, volunteered with the Minority Mentor Program and the Security Escort Service.
    *Worked with DePaul’s Children’s Center as a chaperone for conferences.
    *Worked with People Places as a mentor.

  • There you go again…repeating yourself. And you know how to “cut and paste” Mr. Brown’s bio. In 15 years it looks like Mr. Brown can’t decide on what he wants to do for a living with all the jumping around he has done from job to job. Now he wants to try the Sheriff position for a few years, please. How does one get anything done with all that moving around! Hope this other mystery candidate is more settled in his/her career. I’m still praying for you:)

    MIKE BAIRD FOR SHERIFF

  • I guess James Brown didn’t rely upon a daddy hiring and promoting him? He blazed his way on his own merits.

    Once again, I ask that you post Mike Baird’s accomplishments and qualifications. Something other than showing up for work and collecting a paycheck once a month for 23 years after his daddy hired him and promoted him within the sheriff’s office. You can’t do it, can you? List any college and any degrees he holds. You can’t do it, can you?

    Go Mystery Candidate for Sheriff!

    Go James Brown for Sheriff!

    And by the way, even 12 year old kids know how to cut and paste.

  • Sheriff Johnson started her career helping kids cross the street. What college did she attend to be a crossing guard? My point is that a college degree is nothing but a piece of paper and a lot of money spent. Over half the graduating classes at CHS are enrolled in the advance class degree, and I’m happy to see Mr. Brown was in that percentile. I’m also happy to see Mr. Brown furthered his education by going to college. Good for him. I still don’t see him being qualified to be Sheriff when he doesn’t stay at a job long enough to know what he is doing.

    By the way, 6 year olds also know how to cut and paste so I applaude you for your talented skills on your high-tech gadgets and your use of the word “daddy” over and over again. Family tradition is not something you see often, do you Mr. Demopublican? To follow in the footsteps of your father and blaze your own trail in today’s generation is something to commend Cpt. Mike Baird for. He has been trained by the best for the last 23 years and he is well respected in this community and that is something YOU can’t take away from him.

  • I like this last comment from I Like Mike #2. Family tradition is an amazing thing. If all the fathers in this world could influence their sons and daughters to take the the right path and to give back to his or her community, this world would be a much better place. It doesn’t take a laundry list of education to do that. Good luck Mike Baird and thank you for all your great work in this community. We could use more Mike Baird’s in Charlottesville.

  • Good grief LikesMike#2, is there any wonder why I have to repeat myself so much around here? Please list Mike Baird’s educational level, experience and qualifications. Something more than being hired and promoted within the sheriff’s office by his daddy. The question is not that hard. The floor is yours…..

    And FATHERFIGURES, please tell us about all his great work in the community please. Perhaps you can make a list since LikesMike#2 keeps dodging the question.

    James Brown for Sheriff!

    http://electjamesbrown.com/

  • Fact is if Mike Baird was black and female Demostevepublican still would not vote for him. It is a personal thing with “Steve” and always will be. If we all stop responding to “Steve”, including me, then we would stop adding fuel to “Steves'” fire.

  • If anybody here can show me some legitimate experience and qualifications, I will consider voting for him. I simply don’t feel being hired as a deputy sheriff by his father, being promoted by his father, and feeding at the public trough for 23 years means a person is qualified as a candidate for City Sheriff. For about the fifth time in this thread, please show me some legitimate qualifications.

    I am truly upset that once an African American lands the only high ranking law enforcement position they have ever been allowed to hold in Charlottesville, some of the city leaders want to hand it back to the good ole white boys.

    But, I will also add this. I think the third candidate, an African American police supervisor who will announce soon, will blow the other two out of the water as far as experience, training and qualifications. It’s going to be extremely hard for anybody to sway my vote away from him under any circumstances.

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