"The Degree of Civilization in a Society can be judged by Entering its Prisons - Dostoyevsky
One of the basic problems about Ventura County is most cities are Contract Cities with the exception of the filthy corrupt city of Oxnard. The Sheriff's primary role is to run the County Jails and enforce court orders, overseen by the Civil Grand Jury who is required by the Penal Code to tour the jails and detention facilities (including those run by the County Behavioral Health Agency).
In 1978, California's Constitution was amended with Proposition 6, which required all sheriffs in the state be elective. This overturned Proposition 2 from 1970 which permitted General Law Counties to have an appointed sheriff. In 1989, the Legislature interfered with Proposition 6 by enacting job requirements for Sheriffs. In practice, this turned many sheriff unions into cartels: they pick their own "mob boss" successor, especially in Ventura County where the Sheriff's department has a gatekeeping monopoly over the requirements enacted by the legislature over and above Proposition 6.
Elected sheriffs *should* act as a circle of protection on behalf of their employers- the public, not for thuggish law enforcement brotherhoods and their well-heeled racketeering backers: National Security "fusion centers" giveaways of militarized and unnecessary armored equipment. It's the classic "Broken Windows Policing" racket: 1. Open a Window Repair business, 2. Hire Sheriff Deputies to Break Windows, 3. Have Deputies issue fine for having broken windows, 4. Kick back a portion of the inflated window repair fees to emplace your crony in office and to buy off the press.