Special to The Village News
Questions were emailed to each of the candidates. Only two responded by Friday, May 13. In the following stories, you will have a brief introduction to each candidate for San Diego County Sheriff, with the exception of John Hemmerling and Kelly Martinez, who submitted answers by the deadline, and are running as separate stories.
David Myers has been in law enforcement for 35 years, and he considers it “one of the greatest honors and privileges of my life.”
He started as a Carlsbad Police Officer and then went to the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department and served as deputy. He retired as a commander in 2018.
“Over the course of my law enforcement career, I have seen major shifts in law enforcement principles, strategies and practices, but the one enduring constant for sustainable, safe communities is trust between our residents and our law enforcement agencies,” Myers said.
“...It is not enough to just say “We must do better.” It is imperative that we actually start to do something about (the) increasing violent crimes, the growing mistrust between law enforcement and communities of color, outdated tactics and policies, and a lack of transparency and accountability from the Sheriff,” Myers stated.
Sheriff candidate Chuck Battle brings 55 years of law enforcement to his platform.
He served seven years as a line deputy and a supervisor in detention facilities.
His last assignment saw nine years as an administrative sergeant in a patrol station. While there, he brought innovations to improve “the efficiency of the department’s patrol station and included building a scheduling program that gave the supervisors and management a means of scheduling all shifts.”
John “Gundo” Gunderson
John “Gundo” Gunderson has been in law enforcement in one capacity or another for 31 years.
“I started as an Explorer Scout, worked as a Dispatcher, a Deputy Sheriff, a Police Officer, and a District Attorney Investigator. During my career, I have spent time working for the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, the San Diego Police Department, the San Diego District Attorney’s Office, the San Mateo Narcotics Task Force, and the Redwood City Police Department.
As a sworn officer, I have held assignments in Jails, Patrol, Detectives, SWAT, Witness Protection, Marine & Aviation Units, Records, Communications, Property, Training, Motorcycle Traffic Unit, and Administration. I have worked my way through the ranks and currently hold the title of Police Captain,” he stated.
He has lived in San Diego since 1993, except for a few years spent in San Bernardino and northern California. “I graduated from Miramar Community College with an AA degree in Psychology, and National University – San Diego with a Bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice and a Master’s degree in Public Administration. My wife and I raised three kids in San Diego, all of whom attended local public schools,” he stated.
Gunderson believes that homelessness is one of the most serious issues threatening society today. And he plans to tackle that by creating transient tent housing with the help of other government agencies.
Gunderson believes in leading from the front and “empowering those who work with me to carry out our mission to ensure they have a clear understanding of my commander’s intent, and then vesting them with the appropriate authority to make decisions and be responsible for the outcomes.”
Jonathan Peck is a law enforcement officer with 19 years of experience, five in Los Angeles County, and 14 in San Diego County.
“I tell my children that if we want things to be better, good people need to step up and take leadership roles. I realized at that moment that I was the leader that would best model those principles.
“I chose to respond to an urgent call from my community to run for Sheriff. If you, like me, watched in shock as our federal, state and county officials stripped us of our constitutional rights, then vote for me,” he stated.
Peck is running on the platform of being a Constitutional Sheriff. The position’s duty is to protect our inalienable rights as citizens. … “The Sheriff is the last line of defense for San Diego County residents against tyranny on all levels: Municipal, state and federal,” Peck stated.
Peck has taken the Families First Pledge to “Preserve the right of conscience for all citizens, including their freedom to practice the tenets of their faith. Protect innocent human life from conception to death. Defend the natural family and natural marriage, the foundational building blocks of society. Restore the natural right of parents to determine the best way to educate, raise and care for their children. Promote free-market economic policies that empower families to achieve their highest potential.”
Juan Carlos Marcado “Charlie”
Juan Carlos Martinez, “Charlie” if elected Sheriff will have an open door policy. “All employees, and the people of San Diego, will be able to meet with the Sheriff. San Diego has never had an open door policy,” he stated.
One of his goals is that a new and modern mental health facility will be built, staffed and operated. “No band aid fixes will be implemented” he stated.
“San Diego County has never had a person of color as Sheriff. There is currently an extremely low level of diversity within the leadership ranks,” he stated in calling for diversity.
“Female deputies will no longer, under no circumstances, be labeled as salty or bossy, but as assertive and decisive leaders ready to promote,” he implored.
“There will absolutely be no deportations of soldiers, veterans, and Gold Star Families,” he stated.