What do we know about John Turner's character?
Some have endorsed John Turner because of his employment in Los Angeles and Iraq. He was an employee, not a volunteer. Some say his security clearance is evidence that he is trustworthy. Millions have or have had such a clearance. It adds nothing to his qualifications for sheriff.
Regarding promises to have 24/7 on-duty deputies, Turner's focus on this gives aid to law breakers and makes us less safe. This type of political hype helps criminals feel more comfortable. He is unnecessarily injecting sensitive law enforcement strategy into the politics.
This creation of a crisis, then bringing up his own impossible solution, is evidence of a pure political focus in an attempt to get elected. We do have 24/7 protection in the form of strategically located deputies with fully-equipped vehicles ready to respond 24/7 to any incident reported. Just like the county fire departments and EMS responders, we have sheriff's officers at the ready.
You don't need deputies on-duty, ready to speed away to a fender bender to provide adequate protection to the people. Yes, John Turner should be criticized for creating this sense of crisis for pure political fodder, especially when funds are not available to add seven deputies in the wee hours when nothing is happening. The commissioners will not issue John Turner a credit card to fund his ill-conceived "solution."
Regarding criticism of no K-9 program, we have had a K-9 before and will again. Most important is that we acquire fully-trained dogs and have handlers willing to commit to the extra time and effort to meet considerable legal requirements. We cannot just get a dog from the shelter and go out to catch bad guys. The cost is large and, as funding becomes available, I'm sure the commissioners and the sheriff would continue such a program.
Regarding John Turner's third top issue of efforts to combat gangs, the smoke screen re-appears. He implies nothing is being done. Someone needs to inform him that task forces with drug enforcement and gang prevention efforts are continuing.
I have seen John Turner in action at a non-political function and did not like what I saw. It goes to character. I have told him in person I cannot support him for this job.
Bill White has over 30 years experience working in Walla Walla and he knows the budget, major issues to address and the efforts needed to keep the Sheriff's office operating smoothly.
My vote is for Bill White for sheriff.