After 12 years that saw Grayson Robinson wear the badge as Arapahoe County sheriff, two relative newcomers to local politics are squaring off to replace the popular longtime sheriff. On the Republican side is Robinson’s handpicked successor, Dave Walcher, who took over for Robinsoin when the former sheriff stepped down in early 2014. On the Democratic side, former police officer and current Aurora Public Schools security officer Tyler Brown is running.
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Walcher faces challenge from Brown in ArapCo sheriff race
By Brandon Johansson, Staff Writer
In the race for Arapahoe County sheriff, interim Sheriff Dave Walcher is seeking his first full term as sheriff after being appointed to the post early this year.
For the Democrats, Tyler Brown is seeking the seat. Brown, who served a few years as a police officer in Northglenn is now as a security guard for Aurora Public Schools.
Walcher said the biggest issue facing the sheriff’s office going forward is the budget. While the county has grown in recent years and the demands on deputies have grown, revenues have remained stagnant, he said.
In the coming months, Walcher said he would like to add more school resource officers to the department’s ranks, as well as add a full-time Internet crime unit. Today, a sergeant at the jail handles Internet crime when he and a few other detectives have the time, but Walcher said he would like to have a unit dedicated to investigating cases of Internet luring of a child as well as financial crimes on-line.
To do that, Walcher said the sheriff’s office has to tackle the financial issues from two fronts. On one, the sheriff needs to lobby for more money from the county as well as the city of Centennial, with whom the sheriff’s office contracts with for police services.
On the other, Walcher said the agency has to continue to find ways to be more efficient. To that end, Walcher said they have shuffled some schedules in hopes of better deploying officers, including those assigned to the jail. Other cost-control measures launched during Robinson’s term — including adding a third bunk to many cells in the jail and programs aimed at ensuring defendants know about their court hearings so they don’t miss them and have to spend time in the jail — will also continue.
Brown said he sees the biggest issue facing the department as the same issue facing law enforcement around the country: “Nationwide we are dealing with an issue of trust in our law enforcement agencies.”
He said to fix that, he’d would try to reach out more regularly to the community.
Brown said he realizes he doesn’t have anywhere near the experience Walcher does. But, Brown said, he has always sought out leadership roles and thinks that as an outsider to the sheriff’s office, he brings some unique perspective.
“You’re not electing resumes,” he said.
If elected, Brown said he plans to appoint a Republican as undersheriff and hire staff around him with experience.
“The sheriff doesn’t run everything by himself,” he said.
The Fraternal Order of Police for the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office, which represents the rank and file officers, endorsed Walcher for sheriff.
Walcher said that endorsement is an important one to him, as is the fact that none of his deputies opted to run against him.
“I have the support of the people who work with me and I believe that’s why someone from within didn’t run,” he said.
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Former police officer Tyler Brown is the Democratic candidate for Arapahoe County sheriff. He was born in Denver and graduated from Smoky Hill High School.
Brown is currently security officer for Aurora Public Schools.
Brown attended Eastern New Mexico University and received a bachelor’s degree in political science. He then pursued a career in law enforcement. He was named Adams County Peace Officer of the year in 2012. He was also awarded a Medal of Valor for the Colorado Association of Chiefs of Police and the Dale R. McLaughlin award for the 17th Judicial District National Victim Rights Week. Tyler was also presented with the 2012 North Metro Fire Department’s Outstanding Bravery in Public Service Award.
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Dave Walcher is currently Arapahoe County Sheriff, appointed to the position earlier this year. He is the Republican candidate for the position. He has served in law enforcement for over 33 years. He began his career with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and served with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office for approximately 22 years. While he was at Jefferson County, he served in every division moving up to the rank of division chief. In 2009, he was recruited by former Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson to bring his experience and skills to the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office, and Dave made that move in December 2009.
Walcher serves on the Aurora Mental Health Center Board of Directors and is the co-chair of the state of Colorado’s Correctional Treatment Board. Additionally, Dave has promoted a partnership with the University of Denver Daniels School of Business to create a Public Safety Leadership Development Program.
Walcher received a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Metropolitan State University of Denver and a Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Colorado Denver. He is a graduate of the Northwestern University School of Police Staff and Command, where he was elected Class President by his peers. Additionally, Walcher attended the FBI Law Enforcement Executive Development Seminar (LEEDS) in Quantico, Virginia.
Walcher is also a part-time faculty member/lecturer at the University of Colorado Denver, School of Public Affairs. Walcher is a Colorado native and has lived here his entire life. He and his wife Linda have resided in the same Aurora neighborhood for the past 20 years. — www.davewalcherforsheriff.com
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State Representative Su Ryden
State Representative John Buckner
State Representative Rhonda Fields
State Representative Daniel Kagan
State Representative Jovan Melton
International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 455
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J. Grayson Robinson, Arapahoe County Sheriff (Retired)
George Brauchler, District Attorney for the Eighteenth Judicial District
Commissioner Bill Holen, District 5, Arapahoe County
Michael J Dobersen, MD, PhD, Arapahoe County Coroner/Medical Examiner (Retired)
Mayor Ron Rakowsky, Greenwood Village
Kerry Plemmons, Clinical Professor, Daniels College of Business/University of Denver
Larry Stevenson, Founder and Executive Director, The Medina Alert