Dear Citizens of El Paso County,
Pledge #6 in my Contract with the County is my commitment to go after hard crime targets. Specifically, I will focus on:
- The growing crime surge our county has seen over the last few years
- Criminal gangs (and other forms of organized crime)
- Criminal illegal immigrants
- Public corruption
Allow me to elaborate.
Crime Surge: Over the past few years, we’ve seen a rise in violent crimes, not just murder, but assaults and home invasions that turn violent fast. Burglaries sometimes go wrong quickly, especially when a homeowner startles a burglar in progress. Robberies, muggings, car break ins, etc., are a problem too.
What this suggests to me is an underlying problem: growing use of hard drugs, such as meth, opioids, and heroin. Individuals addicted to such drugs oftentimes seek prescription drugs in homes or just enough cash to get the next fix.
The opioid crisis affects every community in America right now, and when people can no longer get access to prescription opioids they often resort to heroin because it is cheap and easy to obtain.
We need to crack down on the manufacturers and the suppliers of hard drugs to begin to make a dent in the violence that results from it. I’ll do that. Many of the ideas I have about crime targeting involve developing a robust criminal intelligence network.
If there’s one thing I know how to do well, it’s to create intelligence networks. I’ve done it many times in my counterdrug and counterterrorism work. I’ve developed covert networks that work well, stay hidden, and produce effective results.
We have some very talented deputies at EPSO with military experience, some with special operations backgrounds, who know exactly what I am talking about. I’ll develop an elite team to establish and maintain criminal intelligence networks that will work behind the scenes in the community to keep us all safe as we engineer operations to identify, exploit, and neutralize crime elements that threaten the public safety.
Criminal Gangs: We have gangs that operate in our community, some domestic, some with foreign connections. To the extent that gangs or others engage in organized criminal activity, I’ll go after them.
It’s not just a problem with drug trafficking, but frequently organized gangs also engage in human trafficking. The sex industry is alive and well, even in our area, and oftentimes children are exploited and sold for sex.
The vast majority of minors trafficked for sex are female, American, and at the average age of 12 years. I am committed to cleaning up this problem and putting the offenders – the promoters and the perverts who abuse the children – in jail.
If organized gangs are involved in other criminal endeavors, I’ll go after them as well. If need be, we’ll partner with federal authorities and apply RICO (Racketeer Influence and Corrupt Organizations Act) laws to make them do hard jail time.
This also applies to the illegal pot grows in the county. We’ll certainly eradicate crops, but we’ll also cut the head off the snake and target those who are behind the organized end of this business. That also ties in to the next priority, illegal immigration. Some of the people behind the illegal grows have connections to Mexican drug cartels and Cuban organized crime. We’ll go after them.
Illegal Immigration: I have no issue with legal immigration, in fact, I welcome it. My great-great-grandfather came here from Ireland as a teenager. He entered the country legally, became a citizen, fought in the Civil War, and served his country with honor. I respect those who come here legally who may be seeking a better life.
My issue with illegal immigration is the problem of vetting. We have no idea who people are that enter the country illegally. That presents risk to us both economically and from a public safety perspective.
I WILL support President Donald Trump’s immigration enforcement goals and programs.
In 2015, the incumbent sheriff terminated a perfectly-fine and well-functioning enforcement program known as the ‘287(g)’ program. It was a cooperative effort between EPSO and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to target criminal illegal immigrants. The program had been in place since 2007 and functioning well.
I will reinstate the 287(g) program and get us back on solid ground and in support of the President.
In addition, EPSO has a contract with ICE to place illegal immigrants in the jail. That contract ends in August 2018 and there’s been no indication the sheriff will renew the contract.
I will renew the ICE contract and make our county fully compliant with the President’s immigration enforcement goals.
Read: ‘Why El Paso County’s Sheriff Doesn’t Plan To Help With Trump’s Immigration Enforcement’ (That headline alone is alarming).
I have often commented that by dropping the 287(g) program EPSO has moved the county to a de facto Sanctuary County status. When the jail contract with ICE ends, if not renewed, where will that leave us?
I am a genuine conservative. I do not pander. My core convictions remain the same no matter which particular group I may be speaking to. That may not always make me friends, but folks always know where they stand with me.
My stance on illegal immigration will not change. I will go after the criminal illegal element, but I will be compassionate and fair in the process.
Public Corruption: When public officials personally benefit from their power and status, they become corrupt. Corruption has no place in public life, and when I am Sheriff, it will find no sanctuary in El Paso County, same as for criminal illegal immigration.
I am not bought and paid for by other politicians. I don’t drape myself in endorsements from politicians. Most of my endorsements come from people who have known me for 20 – 30 or more years and who have no political connections of their own.
Since the establishment political base is not involved in making me your Sheriff, it cannot claim ownership over me or have any ability to pull my strings. Nothing frustrates the political elites more than the inability to manipulate your Sheriff.
If public officials are corrupt, I will find out and I will go after them and clean up the county.
These are my crime goals. My intention is to make El Paso County safe. I have the leadership experience to make this happen. I know how to develop criminal intelligence networks to target and neutralize those elements that present dangers to our community.
I need your support in March. Attend your precinct caucus on March 6th. Pledge to be a delegate for me and for GOP gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo. He and I share many of the same ideas about government and immigration enforcement. Mr. Tancredo has endorsed me for Sheriff of El Paso County, so if you share his vision, then you share mine.