Democrat Ed Gonzalez: A sheriff who will really throw the book at inmates in our county jail.
Safety expert Ed Gonzalez gets it.
Reducing the number of repeat offenders in our jail will also reduce crime in our neighborhoods. And the surest way to keep ex-inmates from reoffending is to make sure they have the education and skills they need to get a job.
As a veteran Houston police officer who led murder investigations and rose to the rank of Sergeant, Gonzalez knows how to lock up criminals. But he also knows that, for young people and low-level offenders, jail can be the first step in a revolving door of crime unless we prepare them to succeed when they are released.
That’s why, as sheriff, Gonzalez will initiate reforms to offer education and job training to non-violent offenders in the jail.
Ed Gonzalez is a proven crime fighter who will clean up the county jail to make our communities safer.
Gonzalez, a lifelong Houstonian, earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from the University of Houston Downtown and went on to serve 18 years in the Houston Police Department. Gonzalez started out as a civilian employee and became a police officer, rising through the ranks to Sergeant. He served on the elite hostage negotiation team and was a homicide investigator.
After retiring from the police force in 2009, Gonzalez served three terms on the Houston City Council representing District H. He was elected by his peers in 2010 to serve as Vice Mayor Pro-Tem and was appointed Mayor Pro-Tem in 2012 by Mayor Annise Parker.
Gonzalez chaired the council’s Public Safety & Homeland Security Committee. He used his law enforcement background to improve public safety and neighborhood protection – breaking new ground with initiatives to protect vulnerable seniors from elder abuse, expand the fight against human trafficking, reduce the public safety risks of stray animals, protect cyclists and pedestrians on city streets and protect online buyers and sellers from so-called “Craigslist killers.”
As sheriff, Gonzalez will root out cronyism and corruption and increase transparency in the jail. Our current sheriff is taking the agency in the wrong direction. In his first year, he cut the number of jail investigators in half and disbanded the unit that uncovered past cases of abuse and neglect. Gonzalez will reverse those cuts and increase oversight and transparency.
Ed Gonzalez is a criminal justice expert who will fight every day to end the revolving door of our criminal justice system.
Gonzalez knows that being sheriff is more than just police work — it’s about reforming a broken system.
A recent study reported that a whopping 81 percent of inmates had been in and out of the Harris County jail previously. That’s why Gonzalez will emphasize education and training programs – because making sure inmates are working every day to learn job skills, kick drugs and alcohol, gain basic reading skills and develop important life skills will reduce the number of repeat offenders in our jail and cut down on the level of crime in our neighborhoods.
As sheriff, Gonzalez will also work with the district attorney, local law enforcement partners and the community to focus our limited resources on catching hardened criminals – and to reverse years of policies that have led to the incarceration of young people who make mistakes or people who face daunting mental health challenges.
Gonzalez has a long track record of reform on criminal justice issues. As a leader on the Houston City Council, Gonzalez helped lead the creation or expansion of innovative programs to provide alternatives to incarceration and a coordinated response to the challenges of mental health treatment in the criminal justice system.
Click here to learn more about Ed’s accomplishments.