James Theriault sworn in as Oxford County sheriff

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Newly appointed Oxford County Sheriff James Theriault of Rumford has his badge pinned on Tuesday by his son, Shawn, at the county commissioners’ office in South Paris. Watching are James’ wife, Mary, and daughter, Jennifer. (Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal)

PARIS — James Theriault was sworn in as Oxford County sheriff Tuesday morning, surrounded by family, friends, former co-workers and officials.

Theriault, who retired in early 2014 after 20 years as Mexico’s police chief, was sworn in by Dedimus Justice Rick Micklon of Otisfield in a ceremony in the commissioners’ office of the county building on Western Avenue.

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Theriault’s son Shawn pinned the sheriff’s badge on his father’s uniform.

“I’m very thankful and fortunate for the opportunity to serve as sheriff,” Theriault said after taking the oath of office. “I know this is going to be a challenging position, but I look forward to the opportunity that’s been afforded to me. I hope to work diligently in restoring the faith of the community and rebuilding morale in this department.”

He said he hopes to “do the position the justice it deserves.”

Theriault was appointed by LePage on Feb. 6 to serve the remainder of Wayne Gallant’s term, which ends Dec. 31.

Gallant resigned Dec. 6 after allegations that he sexually harassed members of his department.

“I want to get everybody’s confidence back into the Oxford County Sheriff’s Department,” Theriault said. “Hopefully, everyone will work with me to do that. I hope I can do it in the 11 months that I have in the position.”

He asked for “patience and cooperation” from “citizens and the media.”

“I have a few things to sort out and need to take some time to get things rolling,” he said.

Theriault said he has taken out papers to run for a full four-year term, which would make him 74 years old by then.

mdaigle@sunmediagroup.net

Oxford County Sheriff James Theriault of Rumford receives a hug from his wife, Mary, after he was sworn into office Tuesday morning at the county building in South Paris. (Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal)

Oxford County Sheriff James Theriault of Rumford. (Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal)

The ceremonial Oxford County sheriff’s badge, made with locally sourced gold, was worn by James Theriault of Rumford during his swearing-in ceremony Tuesday morning. It sits on the county commissioners’ desk at the county building on Western Avenue in Paris. (Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal)

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