Vowing transparency and accountability at Metro Police, recently retired North Las Vegas police lieutenant Tim Bedwell today launched a bid to become Clark County’s next sheriff, becoming the first candidate to oppose Joe Lombardo in his re-election campaign.
“Clark County deserves a service-oriented leader who values public safety as the top priority, one who believes transparency and cooperation are foundations of public service and knows trust is earned via communication,” Bedwell’s campaign said in a news release.
Bedwell told reporters in a briefing broadcast online that his professional and life experience have prepared him to reach his goal of going “as high as I could” in law enforcement. He spoke about an expansion of community policing and a greater consideration of the public’s input.
And although one of his issues with Metro relates to how its leadership has handled the release of information, including after the Oct. 1 massacre, his decision to run came before the shooting, he said, noting that he’s not privy to the information of the investigation, making it difficult to criticize.
Bedwell had also considered running for the office in 2014, he said. “I’m not running against Metro’s leadership. I’m running for the office of the sheriff based on my background, my leadership ability and what people know of my commitment and what I hope to teach about my commitment.”
According to the release, there needs to be change, noting that Lombardo’s administration “says everything is well in hand. Yet crime statistics show otherwise.”
Rapes, shootings and stabbings were up in 2017, while murders, robberies, burglaries and vehicle thefts were down, according to Metro statistics. Bedwell cited the victims of Oct. 1 who weren’t included in the statistics.
“Parts of the county feel neglected. People want answers from their sheriff but are frustrated. The need to engage the public as a partner, with openness and honesty, has taken a back seat. The department must become more transparent to regain public trust,” the release said.
“(Metro) personnel deserve the highest level of support and the finest training, to make them as safe and efficient as possible,” according to the release. “They must be treated fairly and receive consideration for the dangers of their jobs.”
Lombardo announced his re-election bid for a second four-year term in July 2017. In November, Lombardo’s campaign dispelled a rumor spread by an anonymous source that he was dropping out of the race.
In fact, his campaign had picked up steam in November with meet-and-greet events and fundraisers, his campaign said at the time.
Bedwell served as a gunnery sergeant in the U.S. Marines for 20 years before becoming a detective in the Yuma County Sheriff’s Office and then a police officer in Gilbert, Ariz., according to his LinkedIn account. In 2001, he moved to the North Las Vegas police department, where he rose through the ranks and retired as a lieutenant in May 2017.