UPDATE: Incumbent Sheriff Eric Watson has conceded the race for sheriff to challenger Steve Lawson Tuesday night.

Bradley County will have a new sheriff.

Lawson will be sworn in as Bradley County Sheriff on September 1.

Watson criticized the Chattanooga Times Free Press in commenting on his defeat. The newspaper sent a statement to Channel 3 reading, "In more than years of in-depth, investigative reporting on Eric Watson, he has never once contacted the newspaper to ask for a correction or dispute a fact. We stand by our reporting."

The Times Free Press is a news partner of Channel 3. 

Stay with the WRCB app for more election updates as they become available.


PREVIOUS STORY: Bradley County residents will decide who will be the Sheriff for the next four years.

The incumbent, Sheriff Eric Watson, and his opponent Steve Lawson are both Republican candidates. There are no democrats vying for the sheriff's position, meaning whoever wins Tuesday night will be sworn in as the sheriff on September 1. 

Sheriff Eric Watson is a long time politician. He was with the Tennessee House of Representatives from 2006 to 2014. 

Watson was elected as sheriff of Bradley County in 2014. 

Steve Lawson's background is in law enforcement. He spent almost 24 years with the Bradley County Sheriff's Office. He was also on the drug task force. 

"We got 60 volunteers out at all 17 locations throughout Bradley County," Sheriff Watson said. "Every vote counts in this race."

"Going to different precincts, seeing different people, making sure we have campaign workers out, being visible, keeping the momentum going until the last vote is cast," Lawson said.

This has been one of the more heated races in our area. Both candidates tell Channel 3, they are ready for the day to be over.

We asked what each of them plans on doing if things don't go their way. Both said they aren't sure and they will wait and see.

Stay with the WRCB app for election day updates as they become available.