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Sheriff’s Office prepares to move back into Precinct 3 in Maple Valley
Precinct 3, also known as the Hicks-Raburn Precinct or Southeast Precinct, is returning to its former home located off state Route 169 in Maple Valley with an estimated opening date of Feb. 28.
Precinct Commander Major Brad Thompson said in an email interview Jan. 24 that the projected move-in date is Feb. 20 and that an official reopening is tentatively scheduled for March 18.
The final move-in, Thompson said, will include moving furniture, files, breath test equipment and the live scan machine from the office in Covington to Precinct 3.
Thompson said that one of the challenges of moving back into the building, which was previously the home to the precinct, is making sure that all phone and computer lines are operational prior to opening for business.
Thompson explained in October that the closing of the precinct came about two years ago in response to the sheriff’s office moving from a precinct model to a zones model in order to cut costs. Now the sheriff’s office is moving back to a precinct model.
The property and building are both owned by the county.
“Our mission is reducing crime and fear of crime,” King County Sheriff John Urquhart said before touring the precinct in October. “Reducing fear of crime is just as important. When we get people here in this central location, our response time will go down.”
Thompson, 1.5 captains, four professional staff, eight patrol sergeants, a detective sergeant, four detectives, and 51 deputies will work out of the precinct.
The Covington office will become a storefront location for deputies, similar to the Fairwood location.
The long term plan for Precinct No. 3 also includes taking down the north fence and building a covered parking area where special operations can store its variety of armored and other vehicles that need to be sheltered from the elements, according to Thompson.
Currently those vehicles are stored at various sites around the county.
Staffing levels will remain the same when the precinct moves back in to its former home, Thompson said in October, and staff salaries are a part of the sheriff’s office’s operational budget.
It is also proposed that the special operations unit be moved into the building which includes a captain, sergeant and six deputies.