Race for Franklin County Sheriff: incumbent versus first-time runner

FRANKLIN COUNTY, Wash. — In the running for Franklin County Sheriff, we have incumbent Sheriff J.D. Raymond, and former Connell Police Chief Chris Turner.

Sheriff Raymond is looking to kick off his third and final term before retirement. Turner is looking for his first elected position.

Sheriff Raymond said since his election eight years ago, he’s turned the Franklin County Jail into a dual-accredited correctional facility. It was a big job that took a lot of work, he said.

He also put work into getting the first women deputies into the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office. Now there’s five women on staff. He said there’s more work to be done. That’s why he’s going for one last term.

RELATED: Captain Jim Raymond Retires From Pasco To Transition To Franklin County

“It’s imperative that we address our homelessness issues, and even more important, our mentally ill and addicted that are in our jail systems. It’s creating big problems for us. We need to find alternatives,” said Sheriff Raymond.

Opposing candidate, Chris Turner wrote in his statement that the County must work together to fix the mental health system, offer help to veterans and keep them out of the criminal justice system.

RELATED: ‘We need to address these issues:’ Franklin County Sheriff officials working to combat mental health concerns

There’s been an increase in violent crime in the county, according to Sheriff Raymond. He said it’s up to lawmakers to put the power back in the hands of law enforcement.

“We’ve had a couple of homicides within rural Franklin County, which is way out of whack,” said Sheriff Raymond. “The most concerning thing, to be quite honest with you, is that we had lawmakers, not our lawmakers here in Franklin County or Benton County, change our laws and actually put the power in the crooks hands.”

Turner wrote that crimes in rural areas need to be, ‘investigated diligently, with swift action taken to hold criminals accountable.’

Sheriff Raymond explained that if elected, this would be his last run, and his last term before he retires.

“Part of what I’m doing is to get ready to pave the way for the next Sheriff that comes in and sits in this desk so that it’s an easy transition when I retire,” explained Raymond.

Turner wrote that he learned to humanize the badge in his time in law enforcement. Sheriff Raymond said he’s looking to continue on with his current efforts.

KAPP-KVEW Local News is in communication with Chris Turner, but he was unable to meet for an interview at the time of this publication.

Find election updates for Franklin County Sheriff here.