DUMFRIES, Va. – Iraq War Veteran and Deputy Sheriff Josh King, the first Democrat to run for Sheriff in Prince William County in 16 years, today issued the following statement conceding the race to Sheriff Glen Hill:
“I congratulate Sheriff Hill on a close but clean victory, and I ask him to end the county’s 287(g) partnership with ICE,” said King. “287(g) is the Jim Crow of the new millennium, and we cannot build public trust between law enforcement and this majority-minority community so long as it exists. As chairman of the Jail Board, the sheriff has both a vote and a voice in ending this voluntary program.
“I also congratulate my Democratic colleagues on their victories and urge them to use the power delegated to them by the people to defund 287(g). The county raised taxes and cut public safety services upon its adoption, which has since cost our community more than $2 million. We are living in an era in which our country is putting brown children in cages. Now more than ever, it is our moral imperative to do everything we can to end discrimination against and the dehumanization of immigrants and people of color. With a Democratic majority, the Board of Supervisors can and should defund this program. There is no time for timidity.
“Furthermore, we have sentenced too many children, too many veterans, too many people who struggle with addiction, too many people with mental illness and too many people with special needs to live in and out of cages for their entire lives. Virginia was recently ranked the worst state in the country when it comes to the school-to-prison pipeline, and Prince William County recently committed $44 million to expand our jail by more than 200 beds. Building a bigger cage does nothing to address the root causes of crime.
“This race was never about me. It was about building public trust between law enforcement and marginalized communities. It was about meaningful criminal justice reform, so that 50 years from now our children aren’t talking about the same things Dr. King was talking about 50 years ago. And it was about the many, many people and organizations who believed in the progress we were fighting for. That fight does not end with this campaign.”
Josh King is a 38-year-old Iraq War vet, deputy sheriff, advocate for people with special needs, and leader in his local SEIU. He and his wife Candi live in Dumfries and are the proud parents of three children, including a non-verbal teenage daughter with autism. All of Josh’s children attend Prince William County Schools. He is the first Democrat to run for Prince William County Sheriff in 16 years. To learn more about Josh King and his campaign, check out this article from the Washington Post, visit our website at king2019.com, follow us on Twitter, and like us on Facebook.