Jim Neil

Gary Lee campaign Facebook page

Gary Lee, a former Cincinnati Police Department captain, announced Monday he will run as a Republican for Hamilton County Sheriff in 2016.

But Lee may have competition for the GOP nomination. Retired assistant Cincinnati police chief Vince Demasi told WVXU Tuesday that he is "very seriously" considering leaving his present job as Mt. Healthy's police chief to run for sheriff. 

Demasi would have to give up the Mt. Healthy job in order to run; and he said that would be a key factor in his decision "because Mt. Healthy has been very good to me." 

Hamilton County's new sheriff was sworn into office at noon Friday, marking the first time in 39 years a Democrat has held the seat.  It also marked the first time in 25 years the Investiture Ceremony has been performed.

The ceremony for Jim Neil, who's been on the job since January 7, took place at the Hamilton County Courthouse.   Judges Nadine Allen, Melba Marsh, Jody Luebbers and Ralph Winkler presided over the public event held in Courtroom 340, which was filled to capacity.  Judge Allen administered the Oath of Office.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

Hamilton County Sheriff-elect Jim Neil is preparing to take over the reins. Neil bested outgoing Sheriff Simon Leis' right-hand man, becoming the first Democrat to hold the office in more than three decades.

Campaign website

For the first time in 25 years Hamilton County will have new sheriff and he's not a Republican.