James "David"  Carpenter
Available reports...
  • Q3 10/10/2023
  • Q4 1/10/2024
  • Q1 4/10/2024
Candidate's Statement

Meet JD Carpenter

James David “JD” Carpenter has been a law enforcement officer in Northeast Florida for 30 years. Carpenter is running for Baker County Sheriff because he wants to bring his extensive experience in all phases of law enforcement to the place he loves and calls home—Baker County.

Because of his many conversations with Baker County citizens, JD believes three primary concerns are foremost in the hearts and minds of residents: drugs, specifically Fentanyl, accountability, and transparency.

His varied and wide-ranging law enforcement experience in drug interdiction makes JD uniquely qualified to help stem the rapid spread of drug sales and deaths in Baker County and Northeast Florida.

Carpenter served as lead investigator on drug and corruption cases. He led numerous major narcotics cases and busts as a Tactical Narcotics Detective in Florida and across multiple states with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

"During my long career, I have worked in partnership with multiple federal agencies and police departments around the nation to seize drugs and illegal contraband which resulted in the removal of drug dealers, traffickers, and members of the drug cartels.” said Carpenter.

He is now Sergeant and Commander in the Major Case Narcotics Unit and Violent Crime Task Force. He currently leads a team known nationwide for their crime analysis and intelligence gathering. JD works closely with deputized agents from the DEA and the FBI. Since he worked within the unit long before becoming commander, he not only manages the task force but is a “hands-on” and knowledgeable member of the team in every aspect.

"The sheriff’s office does not belong to a sheriff or individuals who work there.” said Carpenter. “It belongs to the people of the county, and they deserve to know what work is being done within the agency and how it is achieved. As sheriff, I pledge to provide an open and honest agency from day one.”

JD was chosen as an original member of the first federal initiative, Community Oriented Policing Strategies (COPS). As part of COPS, he had a close working relationship with squad members Michelle Cook and T.K. Waters before they each became the sheriff of their respective counties. JD believes the association and mutual respect of Cook and Waters will be of great benefit to Baker County in the investigation and apprehension of those who break the law in our area.

JD attended Florida Community College and Jacksonville University. He and his wife Tonya worship in Glen Saint Mary with their family. The couple has six children between them. He has received medals and commendations for Peer Achievement drug operations.

As a child, JD became a skilled carpenter at his grandfather’s side. He moved to the heart of Baker County in 2019, built a barn and everything in it with his own two hands. He plans to spend the rest of his life in Baker County with his family and in service to the people he has grown to admire and the friendships he cherishes.

"I love and appreciate Baker County, it is the kind of place that you, sadly, think doesn’t exist anymore. It’s a place where you walk into a local restaurant and the same folks are there every weekend drinking coffee.” reflects Carpenter. “Everybody knows each other and they look out for each other. That’s a rare thing these days. As sheriff I will use my many years of experience to protect our small-town character and family values. It is a privilege, one I will never take for granted.”

“As your sheriff, I pledge to always… Stand the Watch for the people of Baker County.”


Note: The candidate's photograph and statement are supplied by the candidate and are not endorsed by the County Supervisor of Elections or checked for accuracy.
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