Attorney General Bob Ferguson releases plan to improve public safety as Governor

Bob Ferguson, Democratic candidate for Governor, today released a plan to improve public safety in Washington State.

The cornerstone of Ferguson’s plan is to increase the number of law enforcement personnel in Washington– including state law enforcement agencies, and helping local governments hire more police officers. Ferguson’s plan includes a $100 million grant program to help understaffed local governments hire more officers. He will also hire additional Washington State Patrol Troopers dedicated to solving auto thefts and hate crimes, and adding resources to a unit in the Department of Corrections responsible for pursuing at-large offenders with active arrest warrants.

Ferguson is the first gubernatorial candidate to release a comprehensive public safety plan. “Washington ranks last in the country in law enforcement personnel per capita – that’s unacceptable, and it will change when I am Governor,” Ferguson said. “As one of my first actions, I will increase the size of the State Patrol and propose legislation to help local governments hire more law enforcement personnel. I will also focus on deploying new technology and data to solve and prevent crimes, and enhance unarmed crisis response units.”

Ferguson’s plan focuses on the following five strategies:

1. Increase the number of well-trained police officers and state troopers.

2. Continue to use the $1.2 billion settlement Ferguson recovered from opioid companies that fueled the epidemic, to implement a fentanyl crisis response plan that includes treatment and law enforcement cooperation.

3. Combat gun violence and reduce incidents of gun violence and harm, investing in proven solutions and community violence prevention programs.

4. Pursue and arrest at-large offenders with active arrest warrants for violating the terms of their parole – individuals who are too often falling through the system’s cracks.

5. Equip law enforcement with improved technology and data, better training and access to mental health and services that will help improve accountability, advance equity, and focus on crime prevention, not just crime response.

6. Invest in upstream solutions, including youth engagement and outreach, behavioral health interventions, and non armed response personnel that de-escalate situations, provide needed support to vulnerable people, and allow law enforcement to focus on crime prevention and response.

Ferguson has a proven public safety record

As Attorney General, Ferguson has a proven record pursuing justice for victims, improving community safety, and holding violent criminals accountable. Ferguson helped lead the effort to eliminate Washington’s rape kit backlog – work that has helped solve at least 21 serious crimes and counting. He’s using innovative DNA strategies to solve cold cases. He formed an

Organized Retail Crime Task Force to investigate and prosecute sophisticated crimes that put workers at risk and harm the economy. And he won nearly 100 trials keeping sexually violent predators detained on McNeil Island. Ferguson successfully wrote and passed bipartisan laws to improve courthouse security, protect

survivors of human trafficking crimes, and combat identity theft. Ferguson works closely with the Washington Association of Prosecuting Attorneys and the Criminal Justice Training Commission. County prosecutors from all political parties –Democrats, Republicans, and Independents – ask the Attorney General’s Office to handle cases. These prosecutors know cases are in good hands with the Attorney General’s Office, and that Ferguson will pursue accountability and justice on behalf of crime victims and survivors of violence.

Prosecutors and police chiefs endorse Ferguson’s plan

“Bob Ferguson will increase law enforcement officers, improve the state’s response to the fentanyl crisis, and make all Washingtonians safer,” said Adam Cornell, former Snohomish County Prosecuting Attorney.“During my career as an elected prosecutor and before that as a line deputy prosecutor who prosecuted violent and sexual offenders as well as the gunman in the 2016 Mukilteo mass shooting, I know what it takes to lead on justice and fairness. I’m proud to endorse Bob Ferguson’s plan to improve public safety. Under Bob’s leadership, Washington will stand up for victims, deliver smart criminal justice reforms, and hold criminals accountable.”

“Bob Ferguson has proven his commitment to safe communities as Attorney General— partnering with law enforcement and prosecutors to reduce gun violence and hold predators accountable,” said Dan Satterberg, former 3-term King County Prosecuting Attorney. “Crime and public safety are complex issues that deserve a holistic approach. As Governor he will build on this record and become the leader we need to strengthen the capacity of our court system, which is still recovering from the impact of the pandemic, address the many facets of the fentanyl crisis, and improve the way we recruit and train our next generation of local police officers and State Troopers. There is nobody more qualified, and nobody who will work harder to get the job done.”

“Having served as a former Chief of Police in Central Washington, I understand the critical importance of effective public safety measures in our communities, said Raul Almeida, retired Chief of Police. “Bob Ferguson’s public safety plan, which includes increasing law enforcement officers and embracing new technology, presents a viable solution to address and prevent crimes in both our largest cities and smallest towns. With a deep understanding of the challenges faced by law enforcement and communities alike, I am confident that this plan will bring about tangible improvements in public safety. It is a well-thought-out strategy that can effectively enhance the safety and well-being of all residents across the state. I wholeheartedly endorse this public safety plan and urge others to support it as well. Together, we can work towards creating a safer and more secure Washington for everyone.”


Bob Ferguson is a Democratic candidate for Governor. He is serving his third term as Washington’s Attorney General. As Attorney General, he blocked Trump’s first Muslim travel ban and Trump’s decision to rescind DACA. Bob won lawsuits against the companies that fueled the opioid epidemic, secured record penalties to combat dark money in politics, took on polluters, and held human traffickers and sexually violent predators accountable.