Clark County Deputy Sheriff’s Guild letter calls comments made by Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney ‘inappropriate, degrading, and shameful’


During a May 25 meeting of the Evergreen School District Board of Directors, Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Rachael Rogers stated that ‘policing in the United States is biased’

The Clark County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office and the Clark County Deputy Sheriff’s Guild are at odds over comments made by Clark County Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Rachael Rogers during a May 25 meeting of the Evergreen School District’s Board of Directors.

Clark County Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Rachael Rogers
Clark County Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Rachael Rogers

In addition to her role in the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, Rogers also serves as a member of the ESD’s Board of Directors, to which she was elected in November 2019. Video circulated this week of the meeting, during which Rogers spoke for more than five minutes about why she is not in favor of having police officers in the district’s schools serving as School Resource Officers (SROs).

“They are not making our kids safe,’’ Rogers said. “Our SROs are trained police officers. They are trained to look at people as threats. They are looking at our kids as threats. Data shows that schools with more police, more SROs, are more likely to refer kids to law enforcement which leads to charges and leads to arrests. Black students are more likely to be arrested than all other students while at school.’’

Rogers was speaking in general terms. The Clark County Sheriff’s Office does not currently have any officers serving as SROs in Clark County.

“Having a police car out in the parking lot of a high school on a daily basis, just think of the impression that that sends to the children as they are walking into that school,’’ Rogers said. “Yes, I agree it would be great if all of our children had a wonderful relationship with the police. But the fact of the matter is that policing in the United States is biased. Something has to change systemically, significantly, in order for that to change for our kids and our schools. We are sending our children of color into a school where they are seen as a threat. Whether it’s consciously or not by the SRO, they are seen as a threat and as someone to protect against not to protect.’’

Clark County Prosecuting Attorney Tony Golik
Clark County Prosecuting Attorney Tony Golik

On Aug. 30, members of the Deputy Sheriff’s Guild’s Executive Board sent a letter to Clark County Prosecuting Attorney Tony Golik, in which they referred to Rogers’ comments as “disparaging remarks about law enforcement. These remarks, made not just about law enforcement in general but, specifically, law enforcement here in Clark County, are inappropriate, degrading, and shameful.’’

Specifically, the Executive Board’s letter highlighted the following statements by Rogers: 

• “Mostly, they [police] struggle around this idea of equity and how policing people of color happens in the real world.”

• “I don’t like the optic of having police officers in our schools and the lack of trust that shows we have in our children.”

• “They [police] are not making our kids safe.”

• “They’re [police] trained to look at people as threats. They’re looking at our kids as threats.”

• “The fact of the matter is that policing in the United States is biased.”

• “We are sending our children of color into a school where they are seen as a threat, whether it’s consciously or not by that SRO, they are seen as a threat, and as someone to protect against, not to protect.”

During a May 25 meeting of the Evergreen School District Board of Directors, Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Rachael Rogers stated that ‘policing in the United States is biased.’
Click to view PDF.

The letter went on to state that “Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Rogers’ emotionally charged and misplaced statements are nothing shy of denigrating, demoralizing, and infuriating to our members who work hard to protect our community, especially our children. A number of law enforcement officers throughout Clark County have involved themselves and volunteered their time with the Police Activities League program. PAL incorporates law enforcement officers, on their own time, to help mentor and encourage youth (particularly underprivileged youth) through athletic programs, reading events, and other activities in order to foster the development of those children and to build trust and healthy relationships between Clark County’s youth and law enforcement officers through positive interaction. Our office walls are lined with ‘Thank You’ cards and letters from children and students throughout Clark County.’’

A key issue with the Deputy Sheriff’s Guild is whether or not Rogers’ comments reflect the position of the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.

“While the Clark County Deputy Sheriff’s Guild respects the right of an individual to their freedom of speech, Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Rogers was not speaking as an individual when she made those statements,’’ the letter stated. “Published on the Evergreen Public Schools website, Rachael Rogers’ profile as a School Board Member lists her as ‘a Clark County Senior Deputy Prosecuting Attorney.’ In light of all this, it is the position of the Clark County Deputy Sheriff’s Guild that Rachael Rogers made those disparaging remarks about law enforcement while acting as a representative of your office.’’

The Deputy Sheriff’s Guild letter also pointed out the irony that the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office seems uniquely positioned to identify systemic racism in Clark County and to prevent it. In her comments in the May 25 video, Rogers stated, “The first time we get a kid involved in the system, even if it’s, you know, in the Clark County Juvenile Justice System, where they get to do diversion, it’s still on their record, it still counts, they still go to jail sometimes, they still have to be involved with probation counselors, and that speaks loudly to how likely it is that we’re going to see them again as an adult in the Criminal Justice System.”

The Deputy Sheriff’s Guild board members responded in their letter by stating:

“Mr. Prosecutor, after an arrest or a referral is made, law enforcement officers have nothing to do with the case unless requested by a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney for follow-up or to testify in court. The onus lies solely with your office whether a juvenile is criminally charged, whether they get to do diversion, or what their sentencing recommendations are. You appointed Rachael Rogers as your Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney, second only to yourself.

“In order to achieve unfailing standards of conduct, Deputy Sheriffs and Deputy Prosecuting Attorneys must maintain healthy and professional working relationships. Those relationships are imperative for us to successfully enforce the law and maintain the public peace in an unbiased manner. Those healthy and professional working relationships are entirely dependent upon mutual trust and respect. The blatant disrespect Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Rachael Rogers has shown toward law enforcement, through her public statements, has caused an uproar amongst our membership and has further generated a seemingly deep-rooted rift in the trust between our offices.’’

Brian Kessel, a sergeant with the Clark County Sheriff’s Office spoke with Clark County Today Monday in his role as president of the Deputy Sheriff’s Guild. He said he and his fellow Executive Board members were still awaiting a response from Golik, who addressed the situation in an interview Monday with Clark County Today.

Golik said that he had viewed the video and had listened to Rogers’ comments.

“She was speaking in her role as an independent elected official,’’ said Golik, who said he read the comments in the Guild letter stating its position is that Rogers’ comments were made while she was “acting as a representative’’ of the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office. “I read that. As I indicated, she was clearly acting and speaking in her role as an independent elected official.’’

As a result, Golik said Rogers has not been disciplined and her position with the prosecutor’s office is unchanged.

“She is a highly valued member of the office who has many years of good work as a prosecutor and lots of work working closely with law enforcement in a highly collaborative manner,’’ Golik said.

Golik was then asked what is the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office in regard to bias against law enforcement officers?

“Our office has a long history with law enforcement and it’s certainly my intent to continue to work with law enforcement and partner with them,’’ Golik said. “Members of our office have a high degree of respect for the critical work that law enforcement officers do. People choose to become prosecutors knowing that we will work with law enforcement and Rachael is no exception to that.’’

Golik was then asked about efforts to repair the relationship between his office and the Officer’s Guild.

“I look forward to our regular work together being the strongest way to improve our relationships and that work happens every day between deputy prosecutors and sheriff deputies and I believe there is a great deal of mutual respect in those working relationships,’’ said Golik, who added that he believes “we will have discussions at various points in the future.’’

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Mike Harris
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Mike Harris
26 days ago

Go figure, another member of the local school system trying to stir up trouble with the law enforcement community. This is the wrong person to have in the prosecutors office. If she wants to be a liberal hate monger, then she should stay with the school district and get out of the business of being a lawyer representing the people of Clark County.

CadeBlue
Guest
CadeBlue
26 days ago

Fallen Sgt Jeremy Brown (Clark County Sheriffs Office) was a School Resource Officer for the Evergreen School District. He was beloved by staff and students. He made a difference.

CadeBlue
Guest
CadeBlue
26 days ago

Fallen Sgt Jeremy Brown (Clark County Sheriffs Office) was a School Resource Officer for the Evergreen School District. He was beloved by staff and students. He made a difference.

Concerned citizen
Guest
Concerned citizen
26 days ago

It’s interesting to me that there was such a strong reaction to this. Sounds like an effort to defend force. “Enforce the law,….public peace.” There’s absolutely no proof that the presence of authoritarian figures with guns leads to peace! Who are you? You sound very threatening to me.

Debbie Banta
Guest
Debbie Banta
25 days ago

Sounds like Concerned Citizen lives in a bubble.

Randy Gorton
Guest
25 days ago

Typical

Pdt
Guest
Pdt
24 days ago

The reason they are in the schools is to keep the kids safe. The reason they carry a gun is they are trained police officers who may come across any situation and are prepared for it. We really need to eliminate activists with a predetermined agenda from any type of authority. This public figure is an activists. She feels that black kids should not be held responsible for crimes they commit because of their skin color.. Get her out

Girst
Guest
Girst
26 days ago

Hire the officers…their presence is needed. We live in a civilized society with rules, laws l, and consequences. The police are not the enemy and there is no reason to fear police unless kids are engaged in criminal activity…and if they are, catch em early and try and make a difference. Leave the students of color victimhood out of it….teach young students of all colors not to engage in criminal activity, respect the police, your teachers, your classmates, and yourself…and there likely won’t be near as many problems!

One up yours
Guest
One up yours
25 days ago
Reply to  Girst

Demand the race soldiers treat everyone with the same respect. And for the love of God, please stop killing our African American neighbors Geez !

Randy Gorton
Guest
25 days ago
Reply to  One up yours

Respect begets respect.

Kathleen moyet
Guest
Kathleen moyet
25 days ago
Reply to  One up yours

You do know that over 94 percent of Black are killed by other Black.
More white are killed by police.
IF PEople would stop doing the crimes and stop running and fighting the law and trying to take police guns from them maybe it would be better.

Kathleen moyer
Guest
Kathleen moyer
25 days ago
Reply to  One up yours

Next time you need help PLEASE DONT CALL A POLICEMAN!
HAVE y

BlueLivesMurder
Guest
BlueLivesMurder
26 days ago

Good for her, speaking to what all reasonable people know to be true. Why are police always playing the victim when they are the ones shooting unarmed citizens. Absolutely keep them out of schools and away from our kids.

Shut the front door
Guest
Shut the front door
25 days ago

Typical little snowflake attitude!

Randy Gorton
Guest
25 days ago

Maybe on out of a thousand is unjustified. I’d like to here your thoughts when one of those brave men or women kill the man that is trying to kill you.

Gilda Radner
Guest
Gilda Radner
25 days ago

I agree strongly with u!!!

N.T.
Guest
N.T.
25 days ago

You want to throw some sources for this happening in Clark County? Not once in my 4 years in high school did our SRO pull a weapon on or arrest anyone in the school. The students would actually seek out deputy Payne on their lunch break and have at length conversations with him outside the security office. And before you ask, yes that includes children of all color, race and gender.

JeremyW
Guest
JeremyW
24 days ago
Reply to  N.T.

Yes but deputy payne was investigated for inappropriateness with those students more than once, which never surmounted to anything but thats how internal investigations go..

Randy Gorton
Guest
25 days ago

I would like to know if she even knows the meaning of diversity. Or racism for that matter.

Jeff K
Guest
Jeff K
25 days ago

What a bunch of clowns at the Sheriff’s office. A bunch of whiny triggered super Karen’s. I mean, Seriously? You can’t handle people talking in general terms about absolute facts? You should be ashamed of your selfs. Not that the PA office is any better, they are just as guilty of rampant corruption and abuse of power as the the Clark County Sherrifs department. You just expect better than whining by these so called professionals. Quit your jobs then if you don’t like the truth.

Brianhood86@hotmail.com
Guest
Brianhood86@hotmail.com
25 days ago

She is 100 percent correct. If she is not correct then explain how officers of the law are trained to look at each individual.

Brianhood86@hotmail.com
Guest
Brianhood86@hotmail.com
25 days ago

more like she represents the state

Brianhood86@hotmail.com
Guest
Brianhood86@hotmail.com
25 days ago

the police are taught to profile every one, place them in what is it 5 or 6 different categories.

Fil
Guest
Fil
25 days ago

If your not out committing crimes you don’t have to worry about law enforcement. The ones that worry are the ones out committing crimes.

Jeff K
Guest
Jeff K
25 days ago
Reply to  Fil

Wow, that has got to be some of the most ignorant and fascist logic I’ve seen. I guess if you don’t have anything to hide , you don’t mind the government spying on you 24/7 either. If you think that, perhaps you should find a country better suited for you. Nazi Germany maybe. Because that has got to be one of the most un American things I’ve heard.

Ken
Guest
Ken
25 days ago

The statements she made are in fact based on hard data. They are not wrong. Everyone of us has bias, anyone who thinks they do not is deluded.

The point here is was she speaking as a prosecutor or as a member of the school board. Well since she was at a school board meeting acting in her role there I’d say the sheriff’s are being a little to defensive.

It’s not about how you personally feel around law enforcement it’s how it effects the kids. This issue isn’t even about how our deputies have performed as SROs. It’s about how it creates a bond of trust or a feeling of fear in the kids at the schools.

Maybe instead of immediately responding by dismissing her comments as liberal chatter we should acknowledge that there is reasons why young persons of color have valid reasons to feel mistrust of law enforcement. It doesn’t mean that any one particular sheriff has been unduly unfair with any of the kids. It’s about a bigger issue in society.

Personally I feel that our deputies are some of the best men & women in law enforcement.

Stop making this about us or them political bs. This is a complex issue and we need to talk to each other to find answers instead of just knee-jerk reactions.

Cadence4Eva
Guest
Cadence4Eva
25 days ago
Reply to  Ken

Actually, she used examples that have been debunked, such as the school-to-prison pipeline. SRO’s in Washington are trained by NASRO (which is the gold standard and approved by the Evergreen Public Schools as the training entity for its SRO’s —Rogers said that that Evergreen Public Schools did not train their SRO’s, a flat out falsehood). The SRO’s primary objective is to get students to adulthood and across the graduation stage. not to put them in jail.

NASRO trains the SRO’s to understand the teenage brain and its development process and that it is a period when most risk-taking occurs (some good some unhealthy) but also where great strides are made. SRO’s are one of the biggest champions for student success.

So, Rogers was wrong on many accounts and bullied the other board members with her “professional knowledge” as a lawyer to get them to get rid of SRO’s.

The irony is that Rogers is so very white. She is privileged, having gone to two very expensive, private universities (Northeastern in Boston and Willamette University in Salem) to receive her education. She is the one as a Senior Deputy Prosecuting Attorney who ultimately chooses to prosecute or divert, not the police. Her ilk talks about diversity but look at the makeup of the school board – it’s not reflective of its students’ ethnic and language backgrounds.

If anything, Rogers took away a great resource that protected the students from teacher/staff predators. She took away advocates who actually have been to the students’ homes and met their parents and understand their struggles at the gritty ground level, not the comfortable, sanitary confines of an office or boardroom.

Gilda Radner
Guest
Gilda Radner
25 days ago

What she said is dead on. When u see a police car at school everyday to me that just sends a message of “we don’t trust you and every student here is a threat” I believe the cops are bias because I see them harassing the homeless and they pull over more people of color than u would think. I see it everyday. She is so right about it, I’m glad someone has finally said something about this. I work at ESD and when I walk into a building where there are cops I feel not safe but like I’m doin something wrong. It would be smarter to just not have cops at schools cause they don’t do nothing much anyway.

Jeff K
Guest
Jeff K
25 days ago
Reply to  Cadence4Eva

Your point? And you think having an SRO there or not at the time made any difference. You can’t say that. Cherry picking cases of times where a crime was committed at a school doesn’t support your argument at all. Neither do cops actually need to be on premise at the time, to handle issues like that. Their is zero evidence putting cops in schools make them any safer. Alot that they make things worse.

Richard crumrine
Guest
Richard crumrine
25 days ago

I know several officers with the VPD and sheriff’s dept. All are heavily involved in the local community and most are coaches for local school sports teams. All are kind, caring and committed to all of our youth. If given a chance step inside/on your local schools gym or field during practice and see your officers at work in person. Then ask yourself what your doing for our community and it’s diverse makeup of beautiful youth.

Josh
Guest
Josh
24 days ago

Your system is biased in general and you are no different lady. What you do is evil and you need to stop

Amanda Pack
Guest
Amanda Pack
24 days ago

So everything she said is correct, and the cops can’t handle rightful criticism. That’s what’s been going on forever. Sad to see that nothing has changed.

Michele Avalon
Guest
Michele Avalon
24 days ago

Ms. Rogers was speaking in general terms. But, yes it applies to all Law Enforcement. It’s not a big secret that blacks are treated unfairly. Do the math. CCSO is no exception. The sooner the problem is acknowledged, the sooner it can be dealt with. There are videos circulating the show Clark County LE (either VPD or CCSO) assisting the Proud Boys. Now that’s inappropriate. Ms. Rogers just called it as it is. And we know that the CCSO is/was working covertly with ICE on a almost daily basis. What does that say? It’s difficult to admit or see that we are wrong sometimes. LE is not made up of bad people. They get orders from above. Start with the County Counsel. Racism is alive and kicking in Clark County. Sad but true.

Edward
Guest
Edward
23 days ago
Reply to  Michele Avalon

If a black person wants to be treated equally in a civilized community, they must behave themselves in a civilized manner equally. Police don’t shoot black persons. Police are at times, however, sadly burdened with shooting criminals.

Last edited 23 days ago by Edward
Peter
Guest
Peter
24 days ago

Hate monger? Did you read a different statement? She simply spoke facts. I applaud her for being honest about problems with policing and the school to prison pipeline.

Pdt
Guest
Pdt
24 days ago

The reason they are in the schools is to keep the kids safe. The reason they carry a gun is they are trained police officers who may come across any situation and are prepared for it. We really need to eliminate activists with a predetermined agenda from any type of authority. This public figure is an activists. She feels that black kids should not be held responsible for crimes they commit because of their skin color.. Get her out

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