With Sheriff Lee Baca’s unexpected retirement, the race for Sheriff has turned in to a free for all. For the first time in the last 50 years, there will be no incumbent in the race which opens up the playing field for several entrants. Retired Sheriff Commander and Baca critic Bob Olmstead has announced his candidacy to replace the County’s top cop. He joined the Morning Answer to discuss Baca’s retirement and the upcoming race.
Brian Whitman wasted no time getting to the point. “Now please let’s not – don’t make this the moment where you say the obligatory things you don’t believe, like Lee Baca’s a good guy and we want to thank him for his public service,” requested Brian. “You’re clicking your heels over there Bob, c’mon!”
“You know, this is time,” declared Olmstead. “This is time for him to step down, this is time the citizens and men and women of the LA County Sheriff’s Department – need new leadership and I’m anxious to step in to this race and make the necessary changes.”
Co-host Elisha Krauss asked Olmstead if he thought things would improve now that Lee Baca is out. Olmstead replied that there are significant issues that remain. “Let me put it to you this way,” Olmstead explained, “the jail abuse, the questionable hiring practices, the obstruction of justice – this stuff didn’t occur in a void. This stuff occurred because the second level, the third level of command leadership is vacant. They have supervisory cowardism, the fail to step up and take this stuff on.”
Co-host Ben Shapiro brought up a recent LA Times editorial that called for widespread changes in the department beyond Sheriff Baca. He expressed concern because the crime fighting record is actually quite good with crime way down.
“Yeah but unfortunately the crime rates are up in the LA County Sheriff’s Department!” exclaimed Olmstead. “We just had 18 people arrested – we’re probably going to have 20 to 40 more is the speculation.”
Brian Whitman then pressed Olmstead on who he thought was the front-runner of the race. “You know I’m the front runner and I take this from the standpoint on the act of goodness. Nobody that is running right now has come out of the whistleblower. Nobody that has come out now is considered the true reformer… My poll indicated that when we looked in to my numbers tripled when they said ‘Bob Olmstead is the whistleblower.’”
Click on the player above to hear the complete interview between Sheriff candidate Bob Olmstead and the Morning Answer crew.