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Tuolumne County Has A New Sheriff

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Sonora, CA — David Vasquez was approved unanimously by the board of supervisors, 5-0, to replace retired sheriff Bill Pooley.

During a public comment period ahead of the vote this morning, there was a mix of praise for Vasquez, and a few concerns raised, not about him, but the selection process.

Captain Vasquez was applauded for his professionalism and commitment to the community by outgoing Sheriff Bill Pooley, District Attorney Cassandra Jenecke, a leader of the Deputy Sheriff’s Association, and several others.

A handful of people, though, including District Four Supervisor candidate Kathryn Saari, and former supervisor candidate David Titchenal, had concerns that the appointment runs four years, through 2028. They argued that there should be more of a public review process, and potentially interviews. Saari noted there were also questions raised about transparency in recent years regarding some people who have been fired from the sheriff’s office, and desiring more answers. Another member of the public said it would be beneficial for an outside person to come in and give the department a fresh look.

Other community members spoke glowingly about working with Vasquez, his military experience, ability to find solutions to problems, and being a school board president.

The support from the board of supervisors was unanimous. District Three Supervisor Anaiah Kirk said, having worked with Vasquez, he feels confident in appointing him and it was unnecessary to do a “drawn-out process.”  He said Vasquez is young, motivated, and has the ability to do good things.

Supervisor Jaron Brandon said it has been an honor to work with Vasquez in past years and that he “exhibits what he likes to see in a sheriff,” being engaged in the community, and holding up high standards.

Supervisor Haff called it a “most important decision.” She added, “I have no doubt that he will continue the standards that Sheriff Pooley set.” She indicated it would be a waste of taxpayer money and resources to do a longer public interview process.

Supervisor Ryan Campbell agreed and said the county is fortunate and in a favorable position since succession planning was done in the sheriff’s office. He praised Vasquez for being in it “for the long haul,” and expressing a desire to run for election four years from now. Campbell said Vasquez is an excellent candidate and the board would regret not picking him.

Supervisor Goldemberg praised Vasquez for being a steady person, young, good demeanor, and a problem solver. He noted that he will step right into the role.  Goldemberg motioned to appoint Vasquez and it was seconded by Supervisor Kirk, and approved 5-0.

Vasquez then received a standing ovation and expressed gratitude for the board’s support and stressed that he and the department members are ready for the task. He was administered the oath of office surrounded by members of his leadership team, and his wife, Jill.

Vasquez steps into the role of Sheriff, immediately.

  • David Vasquez takes oath as sheriff with wife Jill next to him
  • New Sheriff David Vasquez
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