Candidates Charlie Hoots and Greg Paylor in runoff for open Southaven Board of Aldermen seat

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DESOTO COUNTY, Miss. — Candidates Charlie Hoots and Greg Paylor are in the runoff for an open Southaven Board of Aldermen seat after a special election Tuesday night.

Tuesday is election day in Southaven as voters choose a replacement for a former alderman who is surrounded by scandal.

It's an uncommon election the people of Ward Two never expected.

A group of candidates are trying to win a seat that was vacated by Ronnie Hale in December 2017. He resigned after being charged with transporting child porn.

The 57-year-old former alderman is accused of having sexually explicit pictures and videos of children on his computer.

Jim Whittaker voted for Hale but is glad he's out of office if the allegations are true. "I'm disappointed in the fact that it was child porn, you know? To me, that's the lowest of the low."

There are seven candidates running, including pastor Brenda Anderson, former WREG employee Charlie Hoots, long-time resident Norine Sloan, former alderman Harold Moore, former Desoto County Sheriff's deputy Johnny Johnson, Korean War veteran Don Daniels and former Horn Lake police officer Greg Paylor.

"I'd like to see us grow, do better," Whittaker said.

Whether his candidate wins or not, Todd Lemmon is eager to see someone new in office.

He says Hale definitely had to go. "I don't think anybody that's in public office should take for granted that they can do something like that and just carry on, you know?" Lemmon said.

He hopes whoever wins moves the city forward.

"There a lot of things that we could improve on," Lemmon said.

On that note, Whittaker hopes this election helps the city move past the scandal surrounding Hale.

"Well, hopefully. Hopefully. We need some good, Christian people in office," he said.

The polling location is at the Desoto County Justice Court building. The polls close at 7 pm.

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