OPD Patch

The Owatonna Police Department announces several staffing transitions that are occurring.

“Several senior officers are approaching retirement and we are pleased to provide career growth opportunities for others in our department,” said Chief Keith Hiller.

Captain Eric Rethemeier will retire at the end of January following a 31-year career in law enforcement.

“It is the right time for the next generation of police leaders to have their opportunity to lead,” said Rethemeier.

Sergeant Josh Sorensen was promoted to Captain effective September 26, 2021, to provide a seamless transition for Rethemeier’s departure from the department and to backfill an opening created when Captain Jeff Mundale, who serves as a Patrol Commander, was selected to attend the 11-week FBI National Academy leadership and specialized training program in Quantico, Virginia. His completion of this program was celebrated Dec. 16. Detective Ben Johnson was promoted to Sergeant effective Dec. 5, to prepare for Sorenson’s promotion.

Sergeant Andy DeVinny will retire in February following 25 years of service in law enforcement. Detective Val Satre will be promoted to Sergeant mid-February to provide continuity.

“If you see these officers, please thank them for their dedication to Owatonna and our department,” Hiller said. “They each have a solid history of serving our community and a strong commitment to providing professional, caring law enforcement for our citizens. Our community is fortunate to have benefitted from their years of service. I am excited to see our officers grow within the department and I look forward to welcoming new officers to the team.”

In the coming weeks, two new patrol officers will be hired and an additional patrol officer opening will be posted to maintain current staffing levels. Qualified candidates are encouraged to apply on the city’s website at owatonna.mn.us to be considered in the selection process which consists of multiple steps to ensure any offer of employment is the best fit for both the city and the candidate.

According to city leaders, the Owatonna Police Department dedicates itself to the highest standards of excellence in professional law enforcement and is committed to providing a comprehensive program of education and enforcement services. The Owatonna Police Department serves the citizens of Owatonna as well as those who visit and travel through the city. The City of Owatonna is committed to providing a community where residents and businesses can thrive. Known for its strong community, education and business culture, Owatonna provides a high quality of life for its residents. Located in southeastern Minnesota, Owatonna is the county seat for Steele County and is home to several major employers.

For additional information about the police department or other services provided by the city of Owatonna, please visit ci.owatonna.mn.us or follow the city of Owatonna on Facebook.

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