In Summation

There is nothing more comforting than knowing we have a strong, intelligent, and compassionate police force to protect and serve us. We are proud of our great service men and women and celebrate their selfless dedication to our community. We should cultivate a culture that will keep the community happy, and retain our great officers in Kootenai County. 

Unfortunately, for decades, we've had a substantial contingency of law enforcement employees who have violated rules, laws, and therefore, our trust. Police negligence, misbehavior, and illegal policing tactics have gone on with nearly zero accountability. Real people suffer, while those who are paid to protect us are allowed to fail us - repeatedly. 


This corrupt group and the leaders who enable their transgressions, disregard our constitutional protections, and dishonor the ones who do their jobs properly. With no effective way to be challenged or held accountable, many officers have developed a "God" complex. These people, and this kind of contempt must not be allowed to plague our community any longer.  


They work for YOU. They work for US. As your Sheriff, I will pledge to root out and remedy low quality employees, unacceptable behavior, and flawed policies that enable them.

The Position Of Sheriff

Contrary to popular belief, the position of Sheriff was created to enable a citizen representative to lead the department, putting the interest of the citizens first. The Sheriff is not elected to protect the police. The Sheriff is not elected to be "Top Cop." The Sheriff is not required to be a law enforcement veteran. They are elected to manage our law enforcement employees. It is a position created to ensure a system of checks and balances to protect you, the citizens, from low quality or improper police behavior.

Naturally in order to protect citizens, a Sheriff must manage a healthy organization of law enforcement employees. This requires being able to listen to their needs and doing all that is possible within reason to provide solutions. 


There is a requirement that must be met to protect your GOD given, and constitutional rights. Incidentally, Detention Deputies become one of the points of checks and balances to help ensure arresting officers follow proper protocol. A Detention Deputy holds a vital position. They cannot legally receive a prisoner from a patrolman without legitimate grounds. One of the reasons our jail is overcrowded is because there are too many unnecessary or illegitimate arrests made, and allowed.  

If forced to choose, a community could have a jail without a patrol system; but it could not have a patrol system without a jail. Nagel is concerned about underpaid Detention Deputies and an over crowded jail. Training and policy enforcement will help remedy the problem.


Nagel's Order Of Representation:

  1. Citizens

  2. Jails and Detention Deputies

  3. Patrol Officers

PROBLEM: Lack Of Discipline

Lack of discipline at the top of the chain causes real problems for real, every day people in the end. All too many times, employees make the wrong decisions and are allowed a "pass." They slide right back into their patterns. The "bad" ones get off and unfairly give the "good" ones a bad name. Sloppy, lazy, and often illegal police work goes unchecked. The cycle creates the following three problems:

1) The great employees, who deserve promotions and raises, have less incentive, as they are weighed equally to the employees who have demonstrated low quality. 

2) Low quality employees don't serve our community properly. Instead they serve their egos by playing the role of "cop."

3) The culture supports laziness and bad decisions, because employees know there are likely no consequences for improper behavior. This grows an unhealthy law enforcement environment.

SOLUTION: Get tough on quality control.

  • Improve training to require more knowledge of laws

  • Revamp civilian complaint intake system

  • Revamp internal affairs system

  • Improve employee behavioral review system

  • Conduct complete employee file reviews

  • Demote offenders

  • Lawfully terminate repeat offenders

PROBLEM: Over-Policing

The term "over policing" refers to a police force that has become too aggressive against it's community. Kooetnai County has an overzealous police force, which allows patrolmen to reach too deeply into our private lives. From conducting illegal, routine patrols outside of jurisdiction, to the controversial contact tracing program, which could enable misuse of the power to track citizens, we have lost control of our police force. Officers are meant to be first responders. We need them desperately when we need them; but when there is not an emergency, we don't need them looking for reasons to cite or arrest people. Our leadership has enabled a culture of over-policing. As Sheriff, I will solve this problem immediately. 

SOLUTION: Create new zero-tolernace policy 

  • Improve training to require more knowledge of laws

  • Revamp civilian complaint intake system

  • Revamp and closely monitor internal affairs system

  • Conduct complete employee file reviews​

  • Lawfully terminate offenders

  • Pursue criminal charges on offending officers

PROBLEM: Poor Case Handling

We have a lazy and ineffective handling of cases. Often there is unexplored territory when it comes to crimes, and it could mean we are missing opportunities for justice. I have several examples, which I have discussed with the prosecutor, Barry McHugh. They include cases such as: K27 Greg Moore, Allison Eisenhorn, Misty Phelps, and Officer Lucas Crigger. Each of these cases involve elements of premeditation, which have not been pursued. 

SOLUTION: Review cases and interview investigators 

  • Search and review such cases

  • Start investigations where appropriate

  • Review investigators' performance, reasoning, or negligence if applicable

  • Take appropriate actions with employees

    • Training as necessary​

    • Demotions as necessary

PROBLEM: Widespread Corruption

We pay our law enforcement personnel, and they swear an oath to uphold the laws they enforce. Some choose to bend the rules or break the laws when it comes to protecting themselves and their colleagues. Lack of transparency enables corruption. Corruption doesn't just happen in the movies. Corruption exists right here, today, in Kootenai County.  The FBI is currently investigating our police force in several cases of corruption, one of which has already contributed to the firing of a Sheriff's Captain. Our police force is corrupt. Public information is withheld, reports are altered, or never entered, body-cam footage edited, cruiser dash cam footage goes suspiciously "missing," and other offenses are committed and or enabled by our officers and leadership. They do so because nobody chooses to stop them. They know they can get away with it.  

SOLUTION: Create new zero tolernace policy 

  • Immediately, lawfully terminate offenders

  • Revamp civilian complaint intake system

  • Revamp and closely monitor internal affairs system

  • Conduct complete employee file reviews​

  • Pursue criminal charges on offending officers

PROBLEM: Nepotistic Internal Affairs

A department simply CANNOT be allowed to investigate its own criminal activity.  Currently we have an internal affairs system in which officers are investigated by their own colleagues, or themselves. As you can imagine, this creates a severe lack of results and breeds corruption. When there are complaints or allegations against a law enforcement employee, they often go unanswered, and the acts that warranted the complaints continue in an environment without accountability. 

SOLUTION: Revamp Internal Affairs system 

  • Isolate IA as a dedicated department

    • No departmental affiliations

    • Consider 3rd party solution

  • Immediately, lawfully terminate offenders

  • Closely monitor internal affairs system

  • Conduct complete employee file reviews​

  • Pursue criminal charges on offending officers

PROBLEM: Officer Retention

We have great officers that we want to keep. It is difficult to retain an officer in our department when they can go down the road to a place like Spokane and make thousands more per year. More than just salaries, many officers know of the lack of integrity in our department and its leadership. They know there is a nepotistic environment that provides an unfair approach to promotions. When good officers are not properly rewarded, we run the risk of losing them.  

SOLUTION: Recognize and promote  

  • Interview employees about their experience

  • Glean information about potentially "unfair" promotions

  • Manage a safe, anonymous system of reporting misbehavior or nepotism

  • Reward and promote employees appropriately

This is OUR county

These are difficult issues to face and difficult issues to resolve. As your Sheriff, Justin Nagel will devotedly and relentlessly represent YOUR interests in this process.


This is YOUR county. Vote Justin Nagel for Kootenai County Sheriff.  

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P.O. Box 182
Rathdrum, ID 83858
Paid for by Justin Nagel for Sheriff, Justin Nagel, treasurer.
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