We taxpayers in McHenry County are about to foot a huge bill to defend Sheriff Nygren and the McHenry County Sheriff’s Dept. in a federal lawsuit filed by Mike Stanard, operator of Galt Airport in Greenwood. Stanard objects to being required to hire sheriff’s deputies at an $80,000/year payrate to protect the public at the Galt Airport rock concerts.
And if Stanard doesn’t pay? Will the Sheriff really close off public roads leading to Galt Airport?
I recall reading of this controversy when it first arose. At the time I thought, “Even though I’m not going to the concert, perhaps I’ll drive out Greenwood Road and see if my passage is restricted.”
Sheriff Nygren is quoted in the July 18 Northwest Herald as saying this lawsuit is the most ridiculous thing he has heard of in his 40 years in law enforcement.
There are only two ridiculous aspects to this federal lawsuit filed against the McHenry County Sheriff's Dept.; 1) that the Sheriff's Dept. allegedly created conditions leading to the lawsuit and 2) the legal expense to Stanard to file such a lawsuit.
I’ve witnessed Sheriff’s deputies strutting around the McHenry County Fair like they own the place. Casually dressed, armed (of course). Hard to discern whether they really were police. And that’s in the daytime. If they are on patrol, they need to be in uniform, so there is no doubt whatsoever of their standing as police. No more black t-shirts and jeans.
If Stanard provides security and no problems result in need for police response, then the cops need to stay away.
Is this an expense that we taxpayers need to foot? Should the Sheriff's legal bill be paid by him or by his political fund? Shouldn't there be an investigation of possible criminal activity connected with improper use of authority?
McHenry County Sheriff's Department needs an Internal Affairs Division, with full investigative authority and the power to charge ANY member of the Sheriff's Department, should they believe a crime was committed.
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