Benton County gets new sheriff after ex-sheriff ousted

KENNEWICK, Wash. (AP) — A former sheriff’s supervisor who left the Benton County Sheriff’s Office over “horrible working conditions” is the new sheriff. The Tri-City Herald reports Tom Croskrey was in charge temporarily of the agency in 2019 when then-Sheriff Jerry Hatcher took a leave of absence because of domestic violence and witness tampering allegations. Croskrey was unanimously appointed Tuesday by Benton County commissioners. The appointment comes two months after Hatcher was recalled with 74% of the vote. Hatcher faced recall when an employee accused Hatcher of intimidating witnesses and public servants in investigations. Hatcher was the first Benton County government official and the first elected sheriff in Washington state to lose office in a recall election.