7/25/2019 3:46:00 PM Trial for former sheriff moved to Anoka County
The trial of former Chisago County Sheriff Rick Duncan will not be taking place in Chisago County. The case was recently shifted to Anoka with no opposition from the alleged victim or the prosecutors here.
A spokesperson for the Anoka County Attorney’s Office said the next tentative court proceeding is an omnibus hearing August 20.
Duncan is charged with two felony counts of stalking and threats of violence, and one gross misdemeanor charge of misconduct by a public officer. He retired in May 2018 soon after a private investigator contracted by Chisago County and investigators in Anoka County developed a case based on employee complaints, that resulted in the charges.
The alleged victim was a female crime analyst in the sheriff’s office. She has left Chisago County employment and has filed an employee discrimination civil suit for damages.
Text messages from the sheriff to this staffer were sent, beginning in the fall of 2017, disguised as coming from someone dubbed “Control Freak.” Text messages and paper letters directed her to do certain things, including staying with the sheriff in the same motel while attending an upcoming law enforcement conference. The staffer’s family were threatened should she report having received the text instructions or not do as she was ordered.
The sheriff at the outset claimed that he too was getting messages from Control Freak, and he advised this staff member to stay quiet and they must do as instructed. Later, through his attorney, Duncan admitted to investigators he was actually “Control Freak.”
All three sitting local Chisago County judges had recently recused themselves from overseeing Duncan’s trial.