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Our command staff bring a wealth of knowledge and a tremendous amount of combined experience to their assignments.  

Sheriff

Born and raised in King County, Mitzi Johanknecht has served her community for 33 years and is an experienced, progressive law enforcement leader.  She began her law enforcement career when she joined the King County Sheriff’s Office on January 8th, 1985.  Through her history of dedication and hard work, along with a strong sense of honor and respect, she worked her way up through the ranks and was elected to the position of Sheriff on November 7, 2017.
 
Mitzi started as a deputy in the north precinct and before her tenth anniversary with the department, she was promoted to the rank of Sergeant. A quick 4 years later, she was promoted to the rank of Captain.  She was then promoted to the rank of Major, commanding the Sheriff’s Office Precinct 4 in Burien.

Sheriff Johanknecht has a wide-range of experience, having served in leadership roles in every division and location in the Sheriff’s Office.  Mitzi was the first woman to command TAC-30, the King County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team. As a deputy, she was the first to work with a multi-disciplinary team in King County housing.  Throughout her career, Sheriff Johanknecht has collaborated with other agencies, community groups and residents to build relationships of trust to promote public safety. 
 
Mitzi and her wife, Maureen, live in West Seattle. Their adult daughter, Sydni, and son in law Scott live in New York City. Sheriff Johanknecht serves as an executive board member for the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs (WASPC). She also volunteers on the board of Companis, a local non-profit that matches volunteer professionals with non-profit agencies in need of staffing assistance.

Mitzi Johanknecht

Sheriff Johanknecht

Undersheriff

Scott Somers is Undersheriff of the King County Sheriff’s Office working out of its Headquarters location in Seattle Washington.  A seasoned law enforcement executive and public safety expert with over thirty-nine years of experience, Somers key strengths include building and leveraging partnerships, developing individuals and teams and achieving effective, efficient results.  His strengths also include strategic planning, capabilities development and budget management.

Somers grew up in a Navy family and traveled extensively when younger.  His family retired to a dairy farm in rural upstate New York.  This is where he met then married his wife of now over 44 years, Debbie.  They have three adult children and five grandchildren.  Somers undergraduate work was at the State University of New York at Hudson Valley and the State University of New York at Utica.  He is a graduate of the Northwestern University School of Staff and Command and the Naval Postgraduate School - Executive Leadership Program in Homeland Security. 

Somers proudly served over twenty-five years in the United States Air Force/Air Force Reserve, primarily with the Air Force Office of Special Investigations.  He spent almost six years with the City of Kent Police Department where he served as a patrol officer and detective.  He lateraled to the then King County Police Department in 1985 and served as a patrol officer, detective and Master Police Officer.  Somers was promoted to Sergeant in 1991, Captain in 1998, Major in 2003, Division Chief in 2005, then served again as Captain from 2008 through 2017.  Like Sheriff Johanknecht, Somers has held a wide array of command assignments including Internal Investigations, the cities of Burien, SeaTac and Maple Valley, and with the transit agency Sound Transit.        

Somers Chaired the King County Police Chief’s Association in 2004 and served on the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs Underserved Victim’s Task Force, and Auto Theft and Sexual Offenders Housing Committees.

Somers is responsible for the day to day operations of the Sheriff’s Office together with the team of three outstanding Division Chiefs he is proud to serve with.  Sheriff Johanknecht has also tasked Somers with overseeing the development and implementation of the King County Sheriff’s Office Strategic Plan and examination and strengthening of the Sheriff’s Office complaint and use of force review processes. 

Scott Somers

Undersheriff Scott Somers

Chief Of Patrol Operations Division

Bryan Howard is a 28 year veteran of the King County Sheriff’s Office with a diverse background, especially having served in several police contract assignments. He has held a variety of positions throughout his career including, Patrol Deputy, Field Training Officer, Detective in the City of SeaTac, Master Police Officer and Motor Officer in the City of Maple Valley, Patrol Sergeant, Field Training Sergeant, and K9 Unit Sergeant. He also served as Police Chief for the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe. Bryan was promoted to Captain in 2008 and served as Fire and Police Chief for the King County International Airport (Boeing Field), Interim Police Chief for the City of Maple Valley and Captain in the City of Burien.

Bryan was promoted to Major in 2018, overseeing all operations at the Southwest Precinct before being promoted to Chief of Patrol Operations, the largest Division in the Sheriff’s Office.

Bryan was born and raised in King County and obtained his undergraduate degree in Business Administration from City University of Seattle, and Executive Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Evans School of Public Policy and Governance at the University of Washington.  In 2012, Bryan graduated from the Senior Management Institute for Police in Boston, Massachusetts, which is sponsored by the Police Executive Research Forum. In 2016, he graduated from the School of Police Staff and Command which is sponsored by Northwestern University where his peers elected him to serve as their Class President. He also obtained his Executive Level Certification from the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Center in 2016. Bryan also is a part-time instructor at two community colleges.

Bryan has a passion for community service having served for many years as volunteer firefighter and emergency medical technician (EMT) and is proud to help with instruction at the Firefighter and EMT academies. He has also served as a volunteer member of a City Planning Commission and one term as a City Council Member where he lives. He also served as a member of the Kiwanis and Board of Directors for the Boys and Girls Club of White Center.

During his career, Chief Howard received two life saver awards and a Meritorious Service Award from the King County Sheriff’s Office. He was given a Good Samaritan Award by the American Red Cross in 2012 and the Public Servant of the Year Award by Discover Burien in 2016.

Bryan and his wife Jessica have 3 children and enjoy traveling, camping and backpacking.

Bryan Howard

Chief Bryan Howard

Chief Of Criminal Investigations Division

Chief Olmsted has served King County for 22 years and has 31 years of law enforcement experience. Troy initially grew up and attended school in the Lake City area of Seattle before moving out to the suburbs of Shoreline and Mountlake Terrace. After honorably serving five years in the United States Air Force with assignments in Europe and stateside, Troy became a deputy for the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office. In addition to patrol, Troy was a member of the Honor Guard, a Field Training Officer, DARE Instructor and Community Relations Officer. After nine years of service to the citizens of Arizona, the call to return to the roots of the northwest could not be ignored.

In 1997 Troy began working in the North Precinct. Having a passion for training, Troy was selected as a Master Police Officer in 2001. Troy trained and monitored new deputies until he promoted to sergeant in 2006. As a sergeant Troy worked patrol assignments in the Southeast Precinct, Metro Transit Police and SeaTac. He supervised a Criminal Investigations Unit and was a Detective Sergeant in the Internal investigations Unit. As a captain he managed Field Operations and Criminal Investigations Units. His assignments included Shoreline and Southeast King County.

As a Major, Troy was Commander of the Southeast Precinct, Sheriff’s Office K-9 Unit and the Administrative Review Team (ART). This team is responsible for reviewing serious use of force and critical incidents. With a background in use of force reviews, Chief Olmsted has been heavily involved with updating and implementing national best practice use of force and de-escalation policies for the Sheriff’s Office.

Troy and his wife Kim live in unincorporated King County. They have been married for 31 years. Together they have raised four children. Their oldest son Ryan is also deputy with the King County Sheriff’s Office. They enjoy family gatherings and traveling.

Troy Olmsted

Chief Troy Olmsted

Chief Of Technical Services Division

Patti Cole-Tindall served as the director of the King County Office of Labor Relations for six years prior to becoming a part of the King County Sheriff’s Office in October of 2015.  Her previous experiences include serving as an internal affairs investigator for the County’s Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention, and an assistant director of that department’s Community Corrections Division.  At the state Employment Security Department, she was responsible for the regional investigative program that detected fraud and theft of unemployment benefits.  She was also a special agent for the Washington State Gambling Commission, and completed the Basic Law Enforcement Academy.

 

More recently, she served as a key advisor to the King County Executive and County Council on strategic planning, labor policy development and employment law as the Director of Labor Relations. She concurrently served as the interim director of the Office of Law Enforcement Oversight (OLEO), working with staff, the Sheriff's Office, and the public to improve services and promote awareness of the role of civilian oversight in King County.

 

As Chief of the Technical Services Division, Patti oversees the KCSO Human Resources Unit, 911 Communications Center, Regional AFIS Fingerprinting Program, Finance and Payroll, Information Technology, the Civil Unit, Data, Records, Contracting and Property Management Units, along with a host of other duties in this varied and complex division. In her free time, she enjoys traveling and spending time with friends and her two sons.

Patti Cole-Tindall

Chief Patti Cole-Tindall