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King County Sheriff Deputies’ Memorial Legislation Passes Council Committee Unanimously

Summary

Legislation honoring the fifteen members of the King County Sheriff’s Office that have been killed in the line of duty has unanimously passed the King County Council’s Law, Justice, Health and Human Services Committee (LJHHS). Currently, there is no memorial within the County honoring those men who died protecting their fellow citizens.

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Legislation honoring the fifteen members of the King County Sheriff’s Office that have been killed in the line of duty has unanimously passed the King County Council’s Law, Justice, Health and Human Services Committee (LJHHS). Currently, there is no memorial within the County honoring those men who died protecting their fellow citizens.

On March 6, Metropolitan King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn proposed this legislation to recognize these individuals through the creation of a memorial for fallen deputies within the King County Courthouse.

"Remembering, honoring and memorializing the Deputies in the King County Sheriff’s Office that have given the ultimate sacrifice is a fitting tribute,” said Dunn. “This memorial is the right thing to do and I look forward to working with Sheriff Urquhart and the King County Police Officers Guild to help create an appropriate memorial worthy of these 15 heroes.”

“The deputies in the King County Sheriff’s Office are some of the finest men and women I have ever known,” said King County Sheriff John Urquhart. “The memorial proposed by Councilmembers Dunn and Lambert is a fitting tribute to those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.”

“I’m pleased that we are establishing this memorial honoring our Sheriff’s deputies who have lost their lives in the performance of their duty,” said Councilmember Kathy Lambert. “Their sacrifice deserves our honor, recognition and gratitude.”

The Sheriff's Office is King County’s first and longest serving law enforcement agency. The first sheriff deputy killed in the line of duty was in 1853 and the most recent was in 2006. All fifteen deputies are recognized both in Washington, D.C. as part of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial, and in Olympia, where they are listed on the Washington State Law Enforcement Memorial. But there is no memorial in the county where the deputies lost their lives.

Dunn’s proposed ordinance calls on the Executive and the King County Sheriff to submit a proposal to the County Council by June 1. The proposal should include where the memorial will be located, a method to solicit designs for the display, and the proposed schedule, budget and potential funding sources for its construction.

The measure has received strong support from the City of Newcastle, which sent a letter to the Council this week urging full Council support (attached). Newcastle was the site of tragedy when Deputy Richard Herzog lost his life protecting that community in 2002.

In the coming days and weeks, Councilmember Dunn will be memorializing each of these fallen Deputies on his Twitter page @KCCReaganDunn.

The ordinance has been sent to the full Council for discussion and final action.



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