Letter to the Editor: Who should be the next sheriff of Plumas County


From an organizational point of view we all need to look at the past years. The sitting sheriff controls his department, or not. He is responsible for the administrative section, the every day patrol duty assignments, the detective office, the jail, and generally, every act committed, or overlooked, by the sheriff’s office. In case he does not perform the many duties, the public criticism will be more than gracious. I never met Sheriff Johns and naturally I never talked to him. In fact at some point in time I did not know his first name and thus during a conversation I referred to him as Long Johns. How do we rate this man.

Most of us already forgot the 2020 fire, but clearly remember the Dixie Fire of 2021. Where was the Sheriff? He wasn’t at his office. He did not have to be there. He left the local duties to trusted and capable subordinate officers. During the period that fire burned there were no complaints or outcries about the sheriff’s department. It ran like an oiled machine. The sheriff did go to the Board of Supervisors to request more money for his troops. However, for the most part his attention was on the fire. He worked with Cal-Fire, The US Forest Service, the CHP, CalTrans, and others. All in effort to reduce the damages caused by the fire and to safe lives. Every night I listened to his report and it occurred to me that he was “on top of things.” No lives were lost!

The evacuations were orderly, there were a few looters, who were arrested. To the present, I have heard no one complain about the sheriff’s performance under pressure. His opponent is spreading the word that if Long Johns is elected there will be mass exodus from the sheriff’s department. That sounds scary and is untrue. But let’s look on the bright side. When, not if, Sheriff Johns is elected and there is a mass exodus, he will have a chance to hire better people.

He did a great job and deserves to be elected. He has more than provided us with proof of his capable leadership and interest in our county.


Jan Klement