You submitted questions, Jason answered. 

Please see the below list of Q&A and feel free to send more to Jason at jasonpoeforsheriff@gmail.com.

Topics discussed in this video Q&A session:

  • When you’re elected sheriff, will the department start hiring people with some real life experiences and military combat training?
  • I would like to know Jason’s thoughts on domestic violence in this county…
  • …and his thoughts on the LAP (Lethality Assessment Program).

I was assigned to the Northwest Virginia Regional Drug Taskforce late 2003. During that assignment, I worked several hundred State and many Federal drug cases in both the Eastern and Western District of Virginia and the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia “Martinsburg”. One of the first steps after making an arrest is an interview with the suspected dealer and/or user. During these interviews, a main focal point of the interview is “drug history of that individual”. Overwhelmingly, every one of both the users and dealers admitted marijuana was the first drug they were introduced to and used. Thus potentially making marijuana their gateway drug that potentially led them to expand their narcotics experiences from the initial usage of marijuana. What concerns me the most as an Elected Constitutional Officer and as a father, is that the marijuana of today is not even close to the marijuana of yesterday. Marijuana today is testing considerably higher producing 20 to 40% THC in many cases. Dealers and users are breaking down the plant and producing wax, oil and edibles for usage that is testing 60 to 80% THC in many cases. The Tetrahydrocannabinol “THC” is the main psychoactive compound in marijuana that gives the high sensation. These high percentages of THC are known to be causing severe psychological issues with users throughout the United States. One state that is currently seeing very negative side effects of the legalization of marijuana is Colorado. I have diligently listened and read countless articles on both arguments. I concede both sides of the argument have valid reasonable points. As I stated above, what really concerns me is the potency of today’s marijuana verses yesterday’s marijuana. With that being said, I am sworn to up hold the Constitution of the United States and enforce the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Marijuana is still classified by the Drug Enforcement Administration as an illegal drug. Marijuana is illegal in Virginia, the law is constitutional, I must and will enforce it.
It will be my priority to bridge the gap between our Senior citizens and the Warren County Sheriff’s Office. I will implement a very similar strategy as to what we will be doing with our youth. As for who the representative will be, I will evaluate the Sheriff’s Office personnel and choose the individual or individuals who possess the right temperament and are best suited to work hand in hand with our seniors. Please know I am committed to more than just showing up to meetings. I will lead from the front and will be personally engaged with our seniors in the community. In being in public service for over 20 years, I know often times Senior citizens may feel embarrassed, don’t want to burden law enforcement or want the stigma of having a patrol car in front of their home. I am committed to educational programs to work hand in hand with our Seniors through the Warren County Senior Center and through the SALT/TRIAD in educating Seniors about fraud, scams, 911 use and how to answer the questions a 911 Telecommunications Officer may have. Also, educating our seniors on driving safety and helping them determine when it's not safe to drive anymore. One program I am very eager to begin is, If You See or Hear Something - Say Something Campaign. No one knows our neighborhoods better than the seniors who live in them. They are and can play a vital role in information gathering or investigative leads. A second program I would like to help begin is one I have participated in before. Senior citizens at the Senior Center make shawls and winter hats for the homeless and knit caps for newborn babies and cancer patients who have lost their hair. We as deputies will be the delivery force for the wonderful items made and see to it that they are handed out in our community. This too allows us in law enforcement to work hand in hand with our seniors. I will personally lead this charge and become a vital leader in bridging the gap between our seniors and the Warren County Sheriff's Office.
No, as the Sheriff of a professional law enforcement organization the Sheriff's Office is not a tool for intimidation or harassment. If an effort was made on his or her behalf to intimidate or harass others, I would immediately notify the Board of Supervisors of such conduct. If the conduct had risen to criminal, I would conduct an aggressive, thorough investigation and in a timely manner, and then turn over the findings to the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office for prosecution.
If there were unlawful acts going on within our local government or with in my own agency, without question I would vigorously and meticulously seek them out and investigate it fully. If it was determined to be a conflict I would immediately turn the investigation over to another agency. I would turn all findings over to the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office for prosecution. I encourage every local government worker here in Warren County and citizen, if you see or know something - say something. There is no place for corruption, it is evil and it undermines our very democracy.
As Sheriff it is my duty and responsibility to represent all people. Realizing this tremendous responsibility as the Sheriff, it is impractical to open investigations on all comments/allegations someone makes publicly. However, if a public official makes a public statement and reports the alleged offense the Warren County Sheriff’s Office or myself, I will aggressively, thoroughly and in a timely manner, have the incident investigated. No person, public official or not, deserves to be assaulted. The results of the investigation will be immediately forwarded to the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office for prosecution.
Thank you for taking the time to ask me your question and thank you for not joining the bandwagon. I have stated before if “anyone” including but not limited to business owners along with elected or appointed officials, has engaged in something illegal and it is proven at trial then they must and shall face the consequences of our Criminal Justice System. As the Republican candidate for Sheriff, I will continue to run a fact based campaign. I have a platform and a direction I want to take the Sheriff’s Office into the 2020’s. I will not engage in the downright nasty, false, non-factual statements and smear attacks that have been levied against my wife, my children and myself along with my campaign. I will not compromise my values and beliefs to win this election. I will continue to be a great leader and run a clean and positive campaign with a positive platform full of substance.
Yes, I am currently a Corporal with the Winchester City Police Department. I accepted this position in January 2017 and over that time have expanded my vast knowledge of law enforcement. There I have become a trusted leader, I have participated in writing and developing along with implementation, of new operational policy and procedures. I continue to be the lead instructor for Officer Survival at the Skyline Regional Criminal Justice Academy. As candidate for Sheriff, I have the following qualifications: Ranks • Communication Officer • Patrol Deputy • Narcotics Investigator • Criminal and Narcotics Interdiction Officer • Patrol Sergeant • Special Operations Team Leader • Special Operations Team Commander • Corporal with Winchester Police Department Investigative Experience • Narcotics State and Federal Investigations Accreditation Experience • 10+ years' experience Policy and Procedures development and implementation Purchase and Procurement • 9+ years' experience as Patrol Sergeant Budget and Procurement • 2+ years' experience as Special Operations Team Commander Serving in the many capacities and rising through the ranks at the Warren County Sheriff's Office, has had a profound impact on my qualifications to be the next Sheriff. Serving as a Corporal with the Winchester City Police Department, has allowed me to attain a greater knowledge on complex issues, some of which we face here in Warren County. During my 20+ year career, I have been a trusted and respected leader in the law enforcement community across the Shenandoah Valley. I have completed several supervisory and leadership schools throughout my career. With my leadership skills, my ability to hold people accountable, and my vast knowledge of the Warren County Sheriff's Office, I know I will achieve excellence through partnerships and transparency. I am a public servant not a politician. I will be as conservative as possible with the annual budget and will work diligently to have the most transparent office allowed by state and federal law.
As Sheriff, I will assign aggressive deputies to the Northwest Virginia Regional Drug Taskforce. These deputies will confront head on narcotics dealers, traffickers and users. They will investigate drug nexuses and other critical case building information in order to prepare cases for successful prosecution.
As Sheriff, if an individual is selling drugs whether it be to supply their own habit or to make money they must be prosecuted for the crime. People are dying and becoming severely addicted from the distribution and use of Heroin and Fentanyl. As Sheriff, I believe people must be held accountable for their actions.
As Sheriff, I will explore all options and look forward to building partnerships with rehabilitation programs. One program I am eager to look into is being sponsored by the Northern Shenandoah Valley Substance Abuse Coalition called the Law Enforcement Overdose Intervention Program. The LEOIP targets non-fatal overdose victims who would be candidates for diversion from the Criminal Justice System to substance abuse treatment. The LEOIP diverts victims into treatment while awaiting lab results. As a result, the individual is engaged in treatment, progress is reported to law enforcement and the officer has discretion to not place the possession charge. The LEOIP avoids the costly criminal justice system and focuses on treatment. This is a program that I look forward to exploring more in depth and potentially bringing to the citizens of Warren County.
As Sheriff, my office will work hand in hand with the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office and the Warren County Attorney to aggressively pursue seizures against those who traffic and sell narcotics in our community. It is my goal to put as much of the seized funds that is allowed by state and federal law back into this community.
Youth development is definitely a priority of mine as a father and a law enforcement officer. I believe one of the most important things a deputy or police officer can leave with a young person is a first impression. I want to ensure that each school resource officer is dedicated and well-adjusted to their respective school and they are committed to building partnerships and the one on one relationships with as many students as possible. As Sheriff, I will encourage the deputies to be active in youth sports and other programs, to be mentors in our community. I will encourage and assist them in engaging and mentoring our youth. I would like to focus on our most vulnerable youth, including those in low-income families, single-parent homes, children of parents on active military duty, and youth with disabilities. Equally important, mentoring and interacting with our youth helps repair the contentious relationships between them and law enforcement. As Sheriff, I will develop a youth academy for kids that have an interest in police or public service. I would like to also incorporate our local County and Fire Rescue system so our youth can experience the entire county emergency services system. This program will teach them basics from the communications level to patrol, investigations, crime scene management and evidence collection, K-9 and swat, alongside what the County Fire and Rescue services can provide. This will be a hands on interactive academy with such things as ride alongs. I will continue the current mentorship program the Warren County Sheriff’s Office and Northwestern Community Services provides as a joint partnership. This program brings one on one mentoring services between deputies and the youth of Warren County. It’s extremely important to me that men and women in uniform engage our youth in every opportunity they have. This is one of the most important partnerships we can make as law enforcement officers. I look forward to the development, implementation and success of these programs.
As the Sheriff of Warren County if an allegation of a crime is brought to me or the Sheriff's Office I will have the matter investigated fully and as promptly as the situation allows. If there appears to be a conflict or bias with the Sheriff's Office investigating the alleged crime it will be immediately forwarded to an appropriate investigating agency; IE: Virginia State Police or a Federal Agency. My number one goal is serving the citizens of Warren County; I am a public servant, not a politician. I will be as conservative as possible with the annual budget and will work diligently to have the most transparent office allowed under state and federal law. I am committed to evaluating and accessing the Warren County Sheriff's Office and all of its programs and services. I will evaluate the analytical and statistical data received in the evaluation allowing me to determine how to best serve the citizens of Warren County. I look forward to working with the talented men and women at the Sheriff’s Office, not adding more.
The Sheriff's Office currently has several specialized units that I believe serve the citizens of Warren County very well. Listed below are the units I was directly involved with while at the Sheriff’s Office.
  1. Special Operations Team
  2. K-9 Unit
  3. Narcotics Division assigned to Northwest Virginia Regional Drug Task Force
  4. Human Tracking Team
  5. Honor Guard
  6. Gang Unit assigned to Northwest Virginia Regional Drug Task Force
  7. Hostage and Crisis Negotiations Team
As for expanding these units or developing new units, I would have to evaluate the data to determine if it’s necessary. In doing so, I will use real time analytical and statistical data collected from within our county to determine whether a specialized unit would be needed to confront the issue in question. I will use the same formula to determine if a unit needs to be expanded, downsized or removed. I will not put a unit together in hopes to catch a criminal or because some individuals have specialized training. Any unit I establish will be justified with real time data and statistical analysis to support the unit. Overall, I believe it has to be a need not a want.
I strongly support constitutional carry.
As Sheriff, I take an oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States and to enforce the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia. I do not support taking someone’s rights away without due process.
My number one goal is serving the citizens of Warren County; I am a public servant, not a politician. I will be as conservative as possible with the annual budget and will work diligently to have the most transparent office allowed under state and federal law. As your Sheriff, I will strive to have the highest trained Sheriff’s Office within the Commonwealth of Virginia, to confront head on the vast issues we face here in Warren County including the drug and heroin epidemic. I will continue to provide highly visible and well trained school resource deputies within every Warren County school for two reasons. First, to provide utmost protection for our children and staff. Second, to provide mentorship and build relationships with the children and youth of Warren County. I stand committed in bridging the gap between Law Enforcement and persons who suffer from mental health crises in our county. I will work hand in hand with our local mental health professionals in order to bridge the gap. I assure you the Warren County Sheriff’s Office will aggressively investigate and prepare cases for the prosecution of those who take advantage and commit crimes against our elderly and most vulnerable citizens.
A few of the initial steps I plan to accomplish to begin to bridge the gap:
  1. I will ensure that the Warren County 911 telecommunications officers input critical information about the individual into the CAD system. Thus allowing responding deputies to see this immediately once dispatched to a person in crisis, on the in car computer. Deputies will be able to READ prior to their arrival if there is PAST interactions with this individual. This will allow the responding deputies to communicate and coordinate a proper approach allowing deputies to establish a dialogue with the individual in crisis.
  2. I will ensure proper reports are being completed and submitted. This will allow proper reporting to be created within the current system, so follow ups and all interactions with people suffering from a crisis are properly documented and forwarded to local mental health professionals for potential follow up.
  3. I will ensure all 911 telecommunications operators and all patrol deputies attend and successfully complete CIT “Crisis Intervention Training”. CIT training is a week long, hands on interaction, involving de-escalation techniques between public service professionals and persons “trainers” suffering from a crisis. As Sheriff, I understand that some interactions may not end in favor of the person suffering the crisis or the deputy/deputies responding. However, it is imperative I provide them the best training in order for them to have a successful outcome in dealing with people suffering from a crisis.