As Sheriff, I will focus on five priorities:
1. Reduce Violent Crime and Property Crime
2. Address Homelessness
3. Restore Public Trust and Accountability in the Sheriff’s Office
4. Reform and Modernize the Sheriff’s Department and Jails
5. Improve Deputy and Employee Wellness
Reduce Violent Crime and Property Crime
The people of Los Angeles County are concerned about the trajectory of crime and are looking for a proven leader to keep people safe. As Police Chief in Long Beach, during my tenure violent crime decreased by 6.5% in Long Beach and property crime decreased by 10%.
I am running for LA County Sheriff to protect the safety of everyone in Los Angeles County. As Sheriff, I will address our community’s immediate public safety needs and ensure that the Sheriff’s Department is doing our job.
To address crime, we must hold habitual offenders accountable for their actions. Law enforcement must implement a data-driven approach, be relentless in investigations, and be surgical with interventions. In addition, law enforcement must coordinate with the DA’s Office to create a plan for habitual offenders, especially for individuals accused of gun violence. Crime knows no borders, and as Sheriff, I will coordinate with the Board of Supervisors, LAPD, and LA County Chiefs to ensure that we are coordinated and successful in our work.
We must also invest in long-term solutions to reduce crime, including prevention strategies like community engagement and social services. In Long Beach, I created a program called the Neighborhood Walks in a high-crime neighborhood. In the program, officers were tasked to build relationships and trust within the community, this resulted in a decrease in service calls and a decrease in shootings.
Homelessness is the humanitarian crisis of our time. Los Angeles County has the largest unsheltered homeless population in the nation and the status quo is not working.
I understand the complexities of homelessness because I worked on homelessness in Long Beach.
In Long Beach, I worked with the Guidance Center to create an innovative jail clinician program to deal with habitual offenders. The Long Beach Police Department's “Clinician in Jail” program provides specialized mental health counseling with the goal of breaking the cycle of homelessness to incarceration. As Sheriff, I will make sure that case management and diversion programs are offered on our streets, in our jails, and also in our courtrooms.
As Police Chief, in Long Beach, I partnered with others to create a multi-disciplinary team to comprehensively address public safety requests while finding long-term and permanent solutions to help the unhoused get the help that they need. I support the creation of a multidisciplinary team to respond to non-life-threatening emergencies. These alternate responses free up our deputies to respond to crime.
And, just as I will work to create accountability and transparency within the Sheriff’s Department, I will advocate for additional accountability and transparency of our partners who receive public resources to address homelessness. We must make sure that the County, LAHSA, and service providers are doing the work that they are being paid to do.
Restore Public Trust in the Sheriff's Office
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is in a crisis of leadership, accountability, and public trust. After nearly a decade of scandals, the current Sheriff was elected on the promise of reform and to clean up the department. Instead, the current Sheriff has failed to root out misconduct, rejected oversight, and destroyed public trust. Restoring public trust requires an outsider with leadership experience and a proven commitment to transparency and accountability.
As Chief of Police in Long Beach, it was my duty as a public servant to respond to the public respectfully, reliably, and truthfully. That is what I did as the Chief of Police in Long Beach, which is why I have the support and endorsements of the Long Beach Mayor and City Council. As Sheriff, I will be transparent with all community partners, especially the Civilian Oversight Commission. I will listen to all thoughts and concerns from the community and work with them to create reforms.
Reform and Modernize the Sheriff's Department and Jails
Significant reforms are needed to transform the Department and bring it into the 21st Century.
I have significant experience in national and international law enforcement policy. I served on the Executive Board of the Major City Chiefs Association, which is composed of law enforcement leaders throughout the United States and Canada who collaborate on innovative policing practices, research-driven methods, government and community engagement, and leadership development.
I will bring to LA County what I brought to Long Beach. I will develop relationship-based policing practices because data shows that building relationships within communities is one of the best ways to keep our communities safe. I will work to develop mental health and substance abuse programs both on our streets and in our jail systems. I will re-examine our use of force policies and work with community partners to create alternatives. I will enforce the use of body-worn cameras, early intervention management programs, and enhanced deputy training. And, I will ensure that all deputies and employees are performing their jobs professionally, empathetically, and constitutionally within the department. And, I will do all of this, while reducing crime.
Not only will I transform the Department to protect the public, but turn it into the premier law enforcement agency in the nation.
Improve Deputy and Employee Wellness
As Sheriff and senior manager for more than ten thousand deputies, I will improve the working conditions within LASD by eradicating deputy gangs and providing wellness programs to deputies and employees. With more than three decades of police experience, I have seen first-hand that the personal needs of law enforcement officers and employees go ignored too often, which leads to negative consequences.
The Sheriff’s Department has been plagued by gangs and cliques for decades. As Sheriff, I will eradicate gangs and cliques within the Department by repairing the management structure, implementing protocols to stop deputies from participating in gangs, and enforcing consequences when we find staff who are involved in gang activities.
Deputy gangs are rampant because law enforcement personnel are subject to more stress than the general public. Their job requires them to work with difficult and even hostile individuals, experience tragic events, and work extended hours. And, they turn to each other for support.
As Sheriff, I will reform LASD’s culture and policies to support the wellbeing and safety of the brave women and men who chose to serve their community. This includes being attentive to equipment and uniform needs, providing mental healthcare, and creating peer counseling and mentoring programs. And, just as importantly, I will work to reduce any stigma associated with mental health care to ensure that all deputies take full advantage of these services. Strengthening law enforcement safety and wellness are not only essential for employees, but also for public safety.