Nevada voters will face a choice this November between two candidates for state attorney general who hold different visions for the future of our Silver State. Incumbent Attorney General Aaron Ford has proven his ability to enforce our state law, crack down on crime and uphold justice to keep Nevadans safe.
As a police chief for a local law enforcement agency, I’m proud of my record working with elected officials and community stakeholders to reduce crime, support evidence-based policing and implement community policing concepts. But what undergirds that success is the ability to develop strong, trusting relationships with elected officials — like Ford. He is a man who wields immense authority and influence in the state and has demonstrated time and again that he is a good, proactive partner in our shared objective of building a safer Nevada. I know I can depend on him to do whatever he can to work with my agency to keep Nevadans safe.
Ford is a longtime public servant — former state Senate minority leader, state Senate majority leader, and now incumbent attorney general — and he knows our community and his constituents well. Under his leadership, the Attorney General’s Office has expanded programs that bring together community leaders and law enforcement to stop violence before it causes tragedy. Ford’s positions on significant issues around keeping our communities safe and our law enforcement safe, too, are well-documented: keeping untraceable ghost guns off the street, supporting violent-history checks for prospective gun owners, rebuilding trust between police and Nevada’s communities, and working with local law enforcement to expand programs that support victims of crime. As attorney general, Ford hosts annual training for law enforcement agencies across the state to ensure we work together and have the most up-to-date information about emerging threats.
Ford is pragmatic in his approach to communities’ relationships with law enforcement — especially in underserved communities. He recognizes that too many young offenders face onerous punishments that prevent them from salvaging their lives. Moreover, Ford understands that inadequate rehabilitation to help offenders rebound leads to more crime, and that the state police reform laws on use of force build trust and legitimacy with the communities they serve. Additionally, he has been a consistent partner with my agency, working hard to ensure that there are adequate resources necessary for officers to do their jobs safely and effectively.
Indeed, Nevada’s law enforcement officers do a dangerous job and put their lives on the line every time they put on their uniforms. Oftentimes, they do not know the specifics or level of danger of the situation they are responding to — whether it be a serious domestic violence dispute, a robbery or any other disturbance. During my tenure as a police chief, Ford has made clear that he believes our officers must have the assurance that if they are fulfilling the duties of their job and responding appropriately to an incident, any review standard should take that into consideration.
Ford’s success as a bipartisan collaborator from his post as the top law enforcement officer is a valuable perspective when Nevadans are concerned about public safety and the relationship between law enforcement and the communities they serve.
In the aftermath of the murder of George Floyd and the killing of Breonna Taylor, Ford’s leadership directly led to the passage of two bipartisan criminal justice bills. One of the bills reforms the use of “no knock” warrants, and the other allows his office to investigate police departments alleged to be engaging in patterns of unlawful policing.
In crafting these bills, Ford brought law enforcement agencies like mine to the table to ensure the legislation would hold officers to a high standard of excellence and improve public safety. He is exacting, diligent, and level-headed. As attorney general, Ford has shown Nevadans daily that our elected officials and local law enforcement agencies have strong relationships and are focused on keeping their communities safe.
Thedrick Andres is chief of police for the City of Henderson. He wrote this as an individual citizen and expert in law enforcement. The views expressed do not necessarily represent the City of Henderson, the Henderson Police Department or any other organization or entity.