Sebastian County Sheriff Candidate Profile: Copeland


By Tammy Moore Teague

Resident Press is going to profile each of the three candidates that are running for Sebastian County Sheriff. Over the next three days you will read the biographical information submitted to us. We will be publishing them in alphabetical order of last name in an effort to be fair and unbiased. Then, on Friday of this week we will run a special Q & A session. RP has asked pointed questions that will help you, the voter, make an informed decision at the polls. 


Jarrard Copeland

Jarrard was born and raised in Sallisaw, OK. He graduated from Sallisaw High School and attended college at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, OK. He also attended Westark Community College and the University of Arkansas Fort Smith. Jarrard moved to Fort Smith in 1988 and then to Greenwood, AR in 1993. His 2 sons, Garrett and Mason attended Greenwood schools from K – 12 and he has 2 daughters, 5-year-old Charlee who will enter the Greenwood school system in August, and 2-year-old Stevie.

He is married to his wife, Nina who works at Johnson Dermatology and is equally committed to helping others. Nina is very supportive of Jarrard’s run for sheriff and works closely with his campaign. In his spare time, Jarrard enjoys spending as much time as possible with his family, traveling and making frequent trips to the lake.

He began his law enforcement career in November of 1991 with the Fort Smith Police Department’s Patrol Division. During his time as a patrol officer, Jarrard received the department’s Life Saving Award after he entered a residence that was on fire and pulled the single occupant to safety.

After spending 4 years in Patrol, he was transferred to the Crime Suppression Unit. The primary function of this unit was to combat a growing gang problem in Fort Smith. Members of this unit also assisted the Major Crimes Unit with various high-profile cases such as homicides and robberies.

In 1998, Jarrard transferred to the Criminal Investigations Division where he investigated various crimes ranging from Burglaries to Homicides. In 2001, Jarrard was promoted to Sergeant and assigned to the night shift patrol where supervised patrol officers.

In 2002 he was selected as the Public Information Officer where he was the spokesman for the department. He was also the Crime Stoppers Coordinator and he supervised the Central Records Division of the police department. He also served as the regional law enforcement coordinator for the Law Enforcement Torch Run to benefit Special Olympics Arkansas. In 2008, Jarrard was promoted to Captain and assigned to the Criminal Investigations Division as the Assistant Commander. In 2013, Jarrard was selected to oversee the Office of Professional Standards where he supervised the Internal Affairs Department, the CALEA Accreditation Office and the Inspections Office for the department.

After 25-1/2 years with the department, Jarrard retired on May 1st, 2017. Even though he retired from his law enforcement career, Jarrard still had a strong desire to serve his community. He decided to become involved in city government by running for City Director in the 2018 election however, upon learning of the current Sebastian County Sheriff’s intention to retire, Jarrard and his wife, Nina, decided it was in their best interest for him to run for Sheriff instead of City Director. He has spent his entire adult life working in law enforcement building strong working relationships with other officers, prosecutors, judges and attorneys from around the state. It just made perfect sense for him to enter the race for Sebastian County Sheriff where he can continue to apply the skills he has learned through training, and more importantly, experience to serve the citizens of Sebastian County.

As Sheriff, Jarrard will ensure trust and legitimacy as well as total transparency in the agency. He is a strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment and firmly believes in our right to protect ourselves and our families with the right to keep and bear arms. He will also make school security a top priority. He believes our children are our most precious resources and that they should be protected at all costs.

Finally, Jarrard is a firm believer in the concept and practice of Community Policing. He understands that for a law enforcement agency to be successful, it must have the support of the citizens. As sheriff, Jarrard will be visible in the county and will build better working relationships with the various agencies as well as the citizens of Sebastian County. He will actively listen to the citizens and will act on the information received. Jarrard is eager to go to work for the citizens of Sebastian County as part of a law enforcement agency that will be the envy of every other county in the state of Arkansas.

CLICK the below link to read Copeland’s endorsement from the Fraternal Order of Police

FOP Endorsement of Jarrard Copeland


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