Former deputy announces bid for Johnston County sheriff

Former Johnston County Sheriff’s Deputy Sheriff Bill Burgess will challenge incumbent Sheriff Steve Bizzell for the Republican nomination on the Tuesday, May 8 primary election. Burgess made the announcement today (Monday, Jan. 8).

Burgess, 50, was born in Washington, NC. I attended Broughton High School in Raleigh in and graduated from Aurora High School in Aurora in 1987.  He attended Basic Law Enforcement Training (BLET) at Central Community College in Sanford, NC in 1990.

He has been in law enforcement for 27 years. He served three years each with the Angier and Clayton police departments and 20 years as a Wake County sheriff’s deputy before joining the Johnston County Sheriff’ Office on Oct. 1 2016 and then resigned on June 9, 2017, citing personal reasons. He then decided to challenge Bizzell.

Burgess said he likes Bizzell and plans to run a positive campaign. He holds numerous law enforcement certifications and has received life saving citations.

“I am running for Johnston County Sheriff, because I believe that I can bring the Sheriff’s Office into the 21st Century and with your help we can ‘Move Forward Together,'” said Burgess. “I would like your vote for Sheriff of Johnston County in 2018 as ‘It’s Time For A Change.'”

Burgess and his wife Carolyn together have four children and three grandchildren.

Sheriff Bizzell announced last November that he would seek re-election for his fifth term and declined comment on Burgess’ candidacy.

“I love being sheriff and serving the people of Johnston County,” said Bizzell. “I am truly blessed with the men and women on staff who assist me each and every day in carrying out the duties of sheriff.”

Former Johnston County Sheriff’s Deputy Bill Burgess is seeking the GOP nomination for sheriff against incumbent Sheriff Steve Bizzell.

Johnston County Sheriff Steve Bizzell will seek a fifth term in office. The primary election is May 8.


  1. Sherwood hill on January 16, 2018 at 1:25 pm

    You have my vote and I will do what i can to help. It time to put new faces i the office. I help Steve get in office and had sign build for him. Steve was a good man but he let this help run him and they are a lot of talk about him on the street and it not good.

  2. Leon Weaver on January 22, 2018 at 11:36 am

    It is time for change. If a person gets to comfortable with their position they are not for the people it becomes personal

  3. Lewis larance on February 11, 2018 at 11:37 am

    Bill is a great guy, very professional and has a big hart. I have known him for a very long time you could not ask for a better man to be our Sheriff. I will certainly be giving him my vote on May 8 th.

  4. James LeCroy on March 28, 2018 at 8:51 pm

    I’ll vote for you if you don’t play politics like Steve Bizzell does. Bizzell won’t enforce the law if he knows the person. Tried numerous of times to get Bizzell to issue a citation against neighbor for disturbing the peace but Bizzell wouldn’t do it.

  5. Wilbur Honeycutt on March 31, 2018 at 9:33 pm

    I have been reading up on Mr. Burgess and based on what I have read I cannot vote for this man. He has bounced from one job to another. He has been accused of various things, especially his ex-wife. I know he has not been convicted of anything, but like the saying goes ‘ WHERE THERE IS SMOKE THERE IS USUALLY FIRE’!

    So I will continue to support our current sheriff.

    • Lewis larance on April 4, 2018 at 7:39 pm

      Mr Honeycutt all you know is what you have read but you don’t know Mr Burgess our current Sheriff has done far worse with his ex wife I know them both better than you and Mr Burgess would make a much better don’t throw stones if you want to vote for Steve then do so but don’t run the other man down he has had 4 jobs in 27 years all in law enforcement and it could very well have been to better his financial situation. Keep your opinion to yourself .

  6. Kenneth G Witherell on April 7, 2018 at 10:00 am

    Could you BE ANY more progressive?? Johnston County can NOT afford to allow a Wake County robot to taint the office of the Sheriff.
    Sheriff Bizzel understands the true meaning of the office, and acts accordingly, when it comes to cases of blatant federal overreach. Like my grammatically challenged friends in this comment thread, I will lobby furiously for Sheriff Bizzel between now and May.
    May God Bless and be with both candidates.

  7. Lewis larance on April 9, 2018 at 8:41 am

    Wake Co robot so is that how you see Wake Co Deputys your Sir My Vote for who You want but I Think your butt does not know your head has moved In. Don’t be such a condesinding Jerk and remember to Vote for the right man and not your good old buddy.

  8. William Weiss on May 4, 2018 at 9:11 pm

    I’ve known Bill Burgess for 20 years and will vote for him for sheriff. He has been a friend and has always treated me and my family with total respect.

  9. Frank Vokoun on June 4, 2018 at 10:38 am

    I d o not know either individual personally. Johnston County Sheriff’s department, is in my opinion is very efficient. I accidentally dropped my wallet in the supermarket parking lot. Someone found it and started charging on my credit cards. It had my federal identification so I had to report it or it would be an issue getting it replaced. They came to my home, made a report and actually investigated it. They even followed up with me later on. I Moved here from Columbus, Ohio with there world class modern police department. Someone broke into my home while I was on vacation stole electronics and complete destroyed my living room. I called the police and it took them 3 days to send anyone. A elderly friend was violently assaulted in her home and they never did anything except look bored and uninterested as they took the report in her hospital room. I was impressed by the individual in that department I had contact with. I haven’t read anywhere about johnston county shooting unarmed teenagers or inebriated homeless people like their more “up to date” peers in Raleigh. His political opponent lives in my neighborhood and has a good reputation and has a reputation as a good man. I just do not think there are substantial problems with Johnston County Sheriff’s department and that is unusual. It is a profession that in its nature is problematic, even with the best of intentions, finances, and technology. I think Sheriff deserves a great deal of credit for creating a county sheriff’s department that has done what its better financed peers cannot.

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