After reading the letters to editor recently in support of John Turner, I feel obligated to write this letter.
I was captain of the jail for 11 years and retired from the sheriff's office after 21 years of service. The deputies and administrative staff in that office are hard-working and well-qualified individuals who don't deserve comments like "look what we have now," "good ol' boys," "back peddling," "not going anywhere" and "ho hum."
Most of these individuals have served this community and the military throughout their lives. All of the deputies have passed the Civil Service examination and the physical agility test prior to being eligible for an interview. Once interviewed, a deputy sheriff candidate is required to pass a polygraph examination. Only after this process is a deputy eligible to be hired and upon hiring must attend and graduate the basic law enforcement academy.
Mr. Turner should be required to go through the same processes but as the sheriff, he won't. It is interesting to note that when a doctor, lawyer, teacher and other professionals return to our community to work, they aren't referred to as "good ol' boys." In fact, that term is seldom used other than at election time.
I retired from 20 years in the military and in today's Army, a top-secret security clearance could be applied for and obtained by any one of the deputies if needed.
I would like to bring your attention to the fact that when Mr. Turner served in Iraq it was as a civilian and not a military service member. Mr. Turner's commitment to country as stated in his literature was apparently motivated by significant tax-free compensation.
Mr. Turner is personable, nice looking and charismatic but these qualities won't do the job. He doesn't know our community like others do with over 30 years of experience.
I question his loyalty and commitment to this community when a substantial amount of his financial support has come from outside Walla Walla County.
I would challenge you to question Turner's rhetoric and not take his claims or the claims of others at face value in the area of law enforcement and administrative background.