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Response filed in lawsuit against Itasca County sheriff

The defendants named in a lawsuit against the Itasca County Sheriff and others on the department have filed a response. Sheriff Vic Williams, Chief Deputy Denise Hirt and Supervisor Albert Morse denied allegations that they made former deputy Tro...

 

The defendants named in a lawsuit against the Itasca County Sheriff and others on the department have filed a response.

Sheriff Vic Williams, Chief Deputy Denise Hirt and Supervisor Albert Morse denied allegations that they made former deputy Troy Ugrich's work environment so miserable he felt he must quit.

Ugrich filed a federal lawsuit April 18, saying that after he publicly backed Sheriff Williams' opponent, he was singled out and targeted.

In court documents, the defendants said they "deny retaliating against Plaintiff because of any political speech that he may have engaged in."

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Ugrich said in his court filing that he was unfairly investigated for misuse of county equipment, but Williams, Hirt, Morse and the county maintain that any actions taken against Ugrich were reasonable and documented.

They said some of those documents support a claim that Ugrich failed to respond to calls. According to the defendants, Ugrich should not be entitled to damages. They allege any repercussions of his resignation are due to "his own wrongdoing, carelessness, negligence or other conduct."

Both sides have demanded a jury trial.

Neither Ugrich's attorneys nor those of the defendants returned requests for comment Wednesday. There are no hearings currently scheduled.

Baihly Warfield is a reporter at WDIO-TV.

Related Topics: ITASCA COUNTYPOLICE
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