News from the chief
I have not had to do one of these articles yet — an article where I say goodbye to a partner.
Matt Schmidt an Officer with the Sleepy Eye Police Department will be retired from Law Enforcement by the time this article is published. Matt started in Law Enforcement at Osakis PD, near Alexandria. He then worked for Springfield PD — Matt’s hometown. In 2007, Matt started with the Sleepy Eye Police Department. Behind Officer McGarry and me, Matt was the longest tenured Officer on the department.
Matt is certainly one of the most known Police Officers in the Department. Throughout most of his career he worked the day shifts. Matt truly was a community service orientated Police Officer. Matt was always willing to stop and share a coffee and talk. Matt was always approachable. That is the Officer most people know.
What they do not know is that Matt was instrumental in keeping the department on track with state reporting, computer records, and really anything thing that came with records organization. Matt was doing this before I became Chief. It has always been my inside joke that Matt would be the hardest Officer to replace, because of his vast knowledge of all the department’s computer systems. Well now I must try and manage without my partner. Matt gave me a crash course last week and I hope I retained most of it. Thankfully, Matt assured me that I could call with any questions.
Matt and I often confuse those that call the PD as we both identify ourselves as just “Matt” on the phone. The common first question we both receive is “which Matt am I talking with?” Although it will be less confusing for those that call, I will miss Matt more than he probably realizes.
When I took over as Chief, I had spent my career working overnights, so Matt and I only saw each other briefly at shift change. We truly did not become partners until I moved to day shift in the Chief’s role. I always felt that Matt and I were uniquely suited to each other. We both have our strengths and weaknesses and I always felt that they were opposite of each other. The department and the city were better because we each had different strengths. I will now need to fill both roles until the new day shift Officer establishes their style.
As much as I will miss Matt, I am comforted to know that he is moving on by his choice and is happily looking to the future. In the next few months, if you see Matt be sure to say hi and thank him for his years of service to this community. I imagine you will find him on the lake, in the parks, out hunting, or at Sleepy Eye Brewery eating Illegal Amigo’s Tacos.