Chuck Atkins for Sheriff

“…the people of this community deserve to be safe in their homes and neighborhoods.”

Chuck's Stances

Stance 1

A tough but smart approach to fighting crime

Everyone wants to live and work in a safe and crime-free environment. A family should be able to enjoy the park without fear. A person should be able to leave their house and come home to find it the way they left it. We can be aggressive crime fighters while also using our limited resources wisely.

Stance 2

Long-term problem solving and partnerships

Partnering with the private sector, our neighborhood associations, and other community groups is key to tackling long-term problems. Addiction, poverty, and mental health issues all contribute to crime problems. A first responder can stop the immediate crisis, but partnerships are crucial in attacking the underlying causes of crime.

Stance 3

Professional service with accountability

Clark County’s taxpayers deserve a professional and well-trained Sheriff’s Office. Whether it’s a routine call, or a life and death emergency, we need to do the right thing every time. You expect it, and it’s our duty to meet that expectation. When we make a mistake, we should admit it, own it, and fix it.

Chuck’s Story

I can still remember the day I put my uniform on for the first time. I looked in the mirror to make sure the badge was straight, the uniform was pressed, and my shoes were shined. I was so excited to hit the street and fight crime in my community. Thirty-five years later I can honestly say that I have never lost that initial excitement and the belief that the people of this community deserve to be safe in their homes and in their neighborhoods.

My career started much like any other law enforcement career; driving a patrol car in my assigned district, and because I had no seniority, it was often very, very dark outside. Responding to prowlers, drunk drivers, and family fights eventually became routine. Because I felt a strong desire to be where the action was and to be the one who caught the bad guy, I decided to become a K9 handler. Titan and I apprehended many felons during our time together, and yes, many of those felons got to know Titan very well and have the scars to show it.

I also joined the SWAT team, first as team member (or operator in SWAT lingo) and then as the commander of the whole team. Many of our callouts were for barricaded and wanted felons, and some were for true hostage situations. Perhaps the most significant event during my SWAT career occurred when Officer Chris LeBlanc was shot while conducting a crisis entry I had ordered in response to a hostage takers threat to harm his hostage. Chris survived this shooting but it was a reminder to all of us that what we do for a living is extremely dangerous. We pray often for the surviving family members of our fallen brothers and sisters.

My experience as a street cop, K9 handler, and SWAT operator prepared me for my transition into a command level position. As a commander and assistant chief, I knew that the respect of my troops needed to be earned and not demanded due simply to my rank. I earned that respect by not losing sight of where I’d come from. Even today I would be happy to put on the uniform of that rookie street cop I was many years ago, check that my badge was straight, my uniform pressed, and that my shoes were shined. Fighting crime was my primary job as street cop and as your Sheriff, it will still be my primary job.

Resume

Education

  • Columbia River High School
  • Washington State Law Enforcement Academy
  • FBI National Academy

Patrol Deputy Assignments

  • Patrol Deputy
  • DARE instructor
  • Field Training Officer
  • Crime Scene Photographer
  • SWAT team member
  • K-9 handler
  • Gang Task Force sergeant

Awards

  • Exemplary Performance Award
  • Medal of Merit
  • Meritorious Service Award
  • Presidential Commendation by Bill Clinton

Law Enforcement Management

  • Sergeant
    • Patrol, Gang Task Force, K-9
  • Lieutenant
    • Precinct Lieutenant
  • Commander
    • Central Precinct Commander, West Precinct Commander, Special Operations Commander
      • SWAT, Bomb Unit, Gang Task Force, Tactical Detective Unit, Marine Unit, K-9, Traffic Unit, Homeland Security
    • Assistant Chief
      • Direct law enforcement operations of the Enforcement Branch
      • Directly supervise Enforcement Branch Commanders
      • Develop and implement agency policy
      • Coordinate labor relations with bargaining units
      • Assist with budget development and management

During my career I have admired Chuck above all others for his courage, integrity, and service to the community. I know Chuck Atkins is the right person to be the next sheriff and I fully endorse him.”

Marshall Henderson, Police Officer