By Sam Stanton
The race for Sacramento county sheriff continued to tighten late tonight, with a runoff Nov. 2 between the top two candidates nearly a certainty.
With 1,067 of 1116 precincts reporting, Scott Jones led Jim Cooper 46 percent to 42 percent, with former deputy Bret Daniels pulling in 12 percent.
Jones, left, said he was pleased with the results so far, noting that when he began the race last summer he was virtually unknown and was running against an established politician in Cooper.
"I can't tell you how gratifying it is to see the initial results having me in first place," Jones said. "Making it through the primary as the top vote-getter would be extraordinary..."
Cooper could not be reached late Tuesday. A fourth candidate, Frank Scafidi, is running as a write-in candidate and so far elections results show write-ins taking less than 1 percent, although most of the write-ins will not be counted until much later.
Cooper has outpaced Jones in fundraising, largely because of strong support from law enforcement unions and other labor groups.
If a runoff is forced, Jones might find his fundraising ability bolstered by a first-place finish over Cooper, who started the race with much better name recognition because of his 10 years on the Elk Grove City Council and his stint as sheriff's department spokesman.
Call The Bee's Sam Stanton, (916) 321-1091.
Photo captions: Top: Jim Cooper gets campaign results from his campaign manager Roger Salazar working with an iPad outside the Lounge in Sacramento Tuesday night. Photo by Renee C. Byer Bottom: Scott Jones kisses his daughter Alexandria, 13, at his election party at the Hilton hotel Tuesday night. Photo by Paul Kitagaki Jr.
Precinct voting map:
3 candidates bring baggage to Sacramento County sheriff's race - April 18, 2010
Profile: Sheriff's Capt. Jim Cooper - April 18, 2010
Profile: Ex-Deputy Bret Daniels - April 18, 2010
Profile: Sheriff's Capt. Scott Jones - April 18, 2010