For Sheriff Chuck Jenkins, the decision to seek re-election for a fourth term as head of the county’s law enforcement wasn’t a tough call.
“I’ve never found a reason to say ‘I want to walk away from it.’ I don’t feel like it’s time to walk away. I should be able to gauge it by the people, and I don’t think the people want me to go yet,” explained Jenkins.
He says the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office has succeeded under his leadership, and he touts decreasing serious crime rates, and a conservative budget.
“For the last four consecutive years, the last four years I’ve been in office, the serious crime rate in Frederick County has dropped well over 30 percent,” said Jenkins. It has “dropped four consecutive years in a row; 11 percent alone last year.”
At the top of the list, Jenkins sees the opioid epidemic as a major concern for the county. For him, this issue isn’t just about drugs.
“The problem is the addiction problem, which is really a behavioral health crisis. That’s not a law enforcement function alone, or a law enforcement problem- it’s going to take everybody, it’s going to take public health, public safety, law enforcement, EMS. It’s going to take state, local, and federal government,” Jenkins said.
Jenkins has proudly defended his hard stance on immigration and the Sheriff Offices’ partnership with ICE, that he says has helped remove more than 1,400 criminal immigrants.
“I really believe everything is at stake here. If we continue with this liberal mindset of let’s let our borders open, let’s let the illegal immigrants come in by the thousands per day that are coming across the border, how is it going to impact all of us every single day? Not only the public safety piece, but as a whole,” Jenkins said.
Jenkins admits, the county has seen less republican voters, a group that largely makes up his voter base. In this election, he’s hoping to attract more than just the 66,000 registered republicans.
“When I first came into office, the republicans had about an advantage of, I’d say, 14,000 in numbers over democrats. That’s changed. The margin is only about probably 4,000, maybe less. Growing number of independent votes, now, the question is how my policies, my decisions, will appeal to the independents,” Jenkins questioned.
Sheriff Chuck Jenkins is running against Karl Bickel, and you can find out more about the democratic candidate at here.