Support Strachan for King County Sheriff
October 3, 2012 · Updated 4:59 PM
As a community activist in Kent I was pretty skeptical when I heard we hired a new police chief from out of state. What does this guy from Minnesota know about the sixth largest city in the state of Washington? Do they even have urban crime there?
Turns out he knew a whole lot more than I thought he did. When Steve Strachan took over as chief he immediately began meeting with community leaders to ask what we envisioned Kent to be. He took that feedback and established neighborhood response teams.
Not only were officers getting familiar with their new territory, but the residents got to know their neighborhood cops. It helped build a sense of community and it was the main reason Kent had a drastic drop in crime. He joined and became president of our local Rotary Club.
He reduced crime, built community and gave countless hours to local charities. When he was offered a position as chief deputy with the King County Sheriff, we all were proud but had heavy hearts that Steve was leaving Kent.
As the chief deputy he hit the ground running in King County. That's why it was no shock to me when I saw the position was vacant and the King County Council unanimously appointed him to the post of sheriff.
The Kent City Council is a nonpartisan legislative body, but it's pretty clear that there are party politics based on organization affiliations and donations by members. The majority of them have bipartisanly endorsed Strachan to retain his seat as sheriff – because this race isn't partisan – it should be based on experience and results.
John Urquhart is a nice man and a fine law enforcement sergeant – but he is just that – a sergeant. Ask yourself in what local government would a sergeant be promoted to top cop?
In Kent we have the rank of commander and assistant chief before you would make the rank of chief. It gives you the necessary time, training and experience to hold the post.
What I find most alarming about Urquhart is through his various speeches he changes his story. When times were good, he calls himself a policy advisor to the sheriff. When things are bad, he says he was just a sergeant. Which is it?
Let's elect someone who has been endorsed by the lieutenant governor, three legislators, six mayors, 12 city councilmembers, four county sheriffs and 14 police chiefs. Someone who has held the post of top cop and not just media spokesman.
There is only one candidate in this race who has the experience, proven track record and support of law enforcement. Join me in retaining Steve Strachan for King County Sheriff.
– Bailey Stober