Decision on complaint could be issued

Local News

An agency that licenses and sets standards for Minnesota peace officers may soon determine the validity of a complaint filed against two Winnebago police officers. has learned the Complaint Investigation Committee (CIC) of the Peace Officer Standards and Training board held a hearing early last month in St. Paul.

A complaint filed last summer with the POST Board alleges Winnebago Police Chief Eric Olson and officer Jacob Pettit used “excessive force” following a traffic stop in May 2020.

Last July, two videos were submitted to the POST agency showing Olson, Pettit and three Faribault County deputies attempting to arrest a motorist for suspected driver’s license cancellation.

At the request of the POST Board, the Scott County Sheriff’s Department investigated the complaint and the findings were turned over to the CIC for review.

The complainant says they were interviewed for nearly one hour by more than a dozen CIC members and an attorney from the Attorney General’s Office.

The hearing reportedly was conducted only for Pettit, who appeared with legal representation.

The allegation of “excessive force,” says the complainant, has been upgraded to “deadly force.”

The CIC is expected to decide next month whether the complaint is substantiated or unsubstantiated. The committee could also ask for additional information or investigation before issuing a decision.

If the POST Board takes disciplinary action, full results of the investigation can be made public.

A spokesperson with the board says final discipline action occurs when a Stipulation and Consent Order is approved or when an administrative law judge issues an order in a contested hearing.

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