In 2020, we will be adding an investigator to the Sleepy Eye Police Department.

In 2020, we will be adding an investigator to the Sleepy Eye Police Department. At a recent City Council meeting I proposed this change to the Police Department. I thought I would explain further why I feel this change is justified and why it is beneficial to the city.

Our officers handle their own case load. When a call comes in that requires investigating, they now have to work that case. This often means working overtime and working on days off. We have had officers work 20 hours, go home and sleep, and then come right back to work. The reality is patrol officers need to investigate their cases, but their shifts still need to be covered, as well. This leads to a poor working environment and some aspect of their work suffering. When an officer is investigating something, no proactive patrol is happening. There are shifts were the officer working is wrapped up in a case and there isn’t a squad car on the roads for hours at a time.

I have worked for the Sleepy Eye Police Department for 15 years. We are the only department during that time frame that has not added an officer to their staff. I feel the best use of an additional officer is an investigator. An investigator will remove the burden of doing two jobs from the officers. An investigator will be able to put more time into each case, because that is their primary job. The investigator will have more dedicated training to help solve larger cases. There are new developments in investigation tactics yearly now with the digital age. Our investigator will be able to stay abreast of these changes so he/she can effectively use these techniques solving crimes.

We have a good working relationship with the Brown County Sheriff’s Office. Their investigators have assisted us in some cases. We look to continue this relationship, with an investigator to work alongside the Brown County Sheriff’s investigator. Part of what makes an investigator successful is the contacts they make in the job with other investigators who can assist in gathering information on a person or business in other communities.

We look forward to having a trained and connected investigator in 2020. I appreciated the City Council for recognizing the problem we are facing and acting to solve this issue. This change will lead to better case management, better active patrols, will reduce officer stress levels and help solve more of the crimes that are committed in Sleepy Eye.