New Sheriff Appointed in Chisago County

May 02, 2018 10:36 PM

Chisago County commissioners agreed to accept the retirement of a longtime sheriff and swiftly appointed his successor at the county board meeting Wednesday. 

Brandon Thyen took the oath in front of his family and community members after county commissioners appointed him to position.


Thyen has been with the Chisago Sheriff's Office for twenty years, spending the past two years as the chief deputy.  After he was sworn in, Thyen acknowledged he didn't anticipate replacing his longtime boss, Rick Duncan.

RELATED: Sheriff in Chisago County Retires 

Back in March, Duncan, who was elected in 2010, announced on social media that he was running for reelection. But one month later, Duncan abandoned that effort and submitted a retirement letter to county commissioners and immediately went on medical leave.  His wife, Kelly Duncan, emphasized in a online post that he is focusing on his health and recovery. 

Pemberton Law Firm and Chisago County leaders confirmed Duncan was under investigation after a complaint was filed against him.

"When we have questions about the conduct of an employee, we treat it seriously," County Administrator Bruce Messelt said. 

Given that the position of sheriff is an elected one, some at the board meeting questioned if information in Duncan's file is public or private.  County Attorney Janet Reiter said she has reached out to the Minnesota Data Administration for guidance.

Sheriff Duncan's retirement takes effect May 4. 

As the transition takes place, Thyen promises transparency,

"You know in law enforcement we make mistakes, we have to learn from those and make the profession better," he said.


Beth McDonough

Copyright 2018 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company


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