Investigation cost more than $18,000

Local News

Blue Earth has finally received a bill for an investigation that cost more than $18,000 and the results will never be made public.

At their meeting on April 1, City Administrator Tim Ibisch says the City Council will be reviewing an invoice submitted by Everett & VanderWiel on March 22.

City officials hired the Twin Cities area law firm to look into a complaint filed against former police officer Chad Bonin last November.

Attorney Pamela L. VanderWiel spent 87 hours on the investigation for a cost of $17,420 and billed the city another $708 for lodging, mileage and transcription fees.

Although the 42-page report details findings regarding alleged misconduct, the results will remain confidential because of a separation agreement reached between the city and Bonin.

Under the agreement, Bonin was paid accrued benefits in sick leave, vacation and compensation time that totaled $10,753.

City Attorney David Frundt says council members had the opportunity to take further action after reviewing the investigation report.

Frundt says the council could have held a Laudermill hearing, but decided not to do so.

“Mr. Bonin would have had the right to respond to the allegations and investigation report and to set out his side of the story to the council,” he says. “The city could then determine if any discipline was appropriate and to take action for that discipline, including termination at that time.”

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