Charles Plummer (sheriff)
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Charles C. "Charlie" Plummer served as the sheriff of the Alameda County Sheriff's Office for Alameda County, California from 1987 to 2007. He is believed to have been the longest serving police officer in California with more than 50 years of continuous service. He is a well-known figure in the California law enforcement community.
Plummer worked to get the ACSO certified by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA), the American Correctional Association (ACA), National Commission on Correctional Health Care (NCCHC) and the California Medical Association (MA). Three of these accreditations are known as the "Triple Crown" and are considered a high honor in the law enforcement community. The ACSO is one of a handful of agencies to hold this distinction nationwide.
Throughout his career, Plummer had been known to impose strict limits on the issuance and distribution of Concealed Weapons permits to Alameda County residents, maintaining that citizens should be required to show a legitimate need for protection before the permit would be issued. In the year 2000, a total of only 150 concealed weapons permits were issued, out of the thousands of applicants. In addition, Plummer required that permit holders carry liability insurance for $1,000,000 and demonstrate to his Department's rangemaster that the applicants were proficient in the use of firearms.
Plummer retired 13 January 2007 after serving five terms as sheriff. Gregory J. Ahern, a 26-year veteran of the sheriff's office, was elected to succeed him. Plummer continues to work one or two days a week at the department's Office of Emergency Services as an unofficial "sheriff emeritus."
On January 8, 2007, at his retirement ceremony celebrating 50-plus years in law enforcement, outgoing Alameda County Sheriff Charles Plummer remained unrepentant about his role as a Berkeley police officer during the People's Park riots:
- "I wish I would have hit some people harder during the riots," said Plummer, speaking of the riots in Berkeley in the late-1960s. "I regret that."
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