Burien police chief resigns, takes job as top cop in Des Moines

Jun 12, 2024, 7:01 AM | Updated: 11:54 am

burien police chief boe...

Burien Police Chief Ted Boe (Photo courtesy of the City of Burien)

(Photo courtesy of the City of Burien)

Burien Police Chief Ted Boe announced his resignation from the Burien Police Department and the King County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO) Tuesday afternoon.

Boe stated he’s leaving his post for an “outside employment opportunity,” which was later revealed to be the police chief for the Des Moines Police Department. His resignation will be effective Aug. 15.

“After much consideration, I have decided to resign from the King County Sheriff’s Office and accept an outside employment opportunity,” Boe wrote in an email addressed to Mayor Kevin Schilling and City Manager Adolfo Bailon, acquired by The Burien Town Blog.

More on Burien: Burien camping ban saga continues as mayor speaks on resolution

He’s been Burien’s police chief since 2018, but the city contracts its police services through the county, making KCSO Boe’s official employer. Boe has been with KCSO since 1997.

“Chief Boe’s name continued to come up in our review process as a person of high moral character, the exact kind of expertise and experience that we needed and someone who may potentially be available to make a move,” Interim City Manager Tim George stated in the announcement.

Burien’s city leadership v Boe

Boe’s departure from Burien and KCSO has been building for some time. Last month, Bailon recommended firing Boe after claiming he had lost trust in his ability to enforce the law, according to The Burien Town Blog. Burien police officers subsequently expressed “no confidence” in both Burien Mayor Kevin Schilling and City Manager Adolfo Bailon, with some considering leaving their posts if the city fired its police chief.

The City of Burien and King County have been involved in an ongoing dispute over the city’s recently expanded anti-camping ordinance. The Burien City Council passed Ordinance 832 in March, prohibiting camping in certain “protected and designated” zones around the city.

The ordinance passed on a 5-2 vote. Unhoused individuals are still allowed to camp in public areas from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. — as long as there is no more available room in local shelters. But those same individuals are barred from setting up any tents or camps within 500 feet of libraries, schools, daycares and parks in Burien.

But on March 11, approximately a week after Ordinance 832 passed, King County Sheriff Patti Cole-Tindall held a press conference announcing that police would not enforce the ordinance over concerns it’s unconstitutional, even filing a legal challenge after the law passed. The City of Burien filed a lawsuit against the King County Sheriff’s Office and Cole-Tindall, alleging the county breached its interlocal agreement for refusing to enforce the aforementioned homeless camping ban.

Rantz on King County Sheriff Patti Cole-Tindall’s decision: King County sheriff directs deputies to ignore Burien encampment ban

Despite Burien being in the middle of a lawsuit with the sheriff’s office for not enforcing the ban, Burien’s city leadership asked KCSO for assistance in replacing Boe — something Bailon has been wanting since May.

“I can no longer state that I trust Boe to fulfill the requirements listed within the Interlocal Agreement,” Bailon wrote in his letter. The Interlocal Agreement is the deal that Burien can operate its police force through KCSO.

It has not been revealed what Boe’s next post will be and where, as of this reporting.

“I hope you can share with my community what a great honor it has been to be entrusted with their police department for the last six years,” Boe wrote in a statement acquired by The Burien Town Blog. “I will be forever grateful for the friendships I have built across our community. I have assembled a team of officers that are second to none in their service to Burien and I couldn’t be more proud of the team I leave behind serving this community!”

More on Burien: King County deputies intercept Burien drug ring tied to Sinaloa cartel

Frank Sumrall is a content editor at MyNorthwest. You can read his stories here and you can email him here.

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Burien police chief resigns, takes job as top cop in Des Moines