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JEROME — After 40 years in law enforcement, Sheriff Doug McFall plans to retire soon.

McFall told the Times-News Friday he hadn’t written a letter of resignation, but he plans to resign in early February.

“We sold our house in Jerome in May and we’re building a new home in Twin Falls County,” McFalls said. He had considered staying in Jerome County and possibly staying on as sheriff for another year.

“I was not sure about running last time, but I wanted to see the jail finished,” he said.

County Commissioner Charlie Howell said plenty of rumors were going around about McFall retiring, so the news wasn’t a surprise.

McFall, who turned 60 last month, is living on his parents’ property until he and his wife can get into their new home.

State code outlines two avenues to replacing any elected officer who resigns mid-term, depending on how much notice the officer gives.

County Republican Central Committee Chairman Jack Nelsen said he hopes McFall gives adequate notice before leaving office so that the committee has time to find qualified candidates to recommend to the county commissioners.

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If McFall quits without giving any notice, it would put the committee in a bind to find qualified candidates in a very short period of time, Nelsen said.

“I would prefer not to have that,” he said. “Everyone wants really strong candidates to apply.”

But McFall doesn’t seem to be in a hurry and says he needs time to move out of his office.

“I have a lot of packing to do,” he said.

If needed, Howell said, Capt. George Oppedyke “is quite competent to fill in.”

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