Kelly enters sheriff's raceSgt. Marty Kelly thinks Goodhue County's deputies need to spend more time pressing the flesh and less time pressing high-tech buttons.
By: Mike Longaecker, The Republican Eagle
Sgt. Marty Kelly thinks Goodhue County's deputies need to spend more time pressing the flesh and less time pressing high-tech buttons.
The 21-year Red Wing police force veteran said that's one thing he'd like to change if elected sheriff.
"I think we focus maybe too much on technology," Kelly said. "We lose focus on what law enforcement is really about - the people."
The Hay Creek resident publicly announced his candidacy Thursday after mailing out 1,000 letters seeking support.
He said becoming sheriff has always been a career goal, adding that he was encouraged to run by a group of sheriff's deputies.
"I wanted to be able to help more people," he said. "I think I can do better and be able to affect more people as sheriff."
He enters a race for sheriff that, for now, includes Goodhue County Chief Deputy Scott McNurlin. Sheriff Dean Albers announced Friday that he will not seek re-election this fall.
Kelly said he would make "human touch" his signature priority as sheriff. He said that would mean making deputies more community-oriented.
"We need to bridge the gap between law enforcement and the public, and I think we've lost sight of that," he said.
He said he would embrace that as well. Kelly, who moonlights as an investigator for the Regional Medical Examiner's Office, said he would ride with deputies and even make death notifications when he could.
"As a leader, you have to show your guys that you're behind them and not just behind a desk," Kelly said.
He said other priorities would include filling the county jail with out-state inmates - a cause his brother, Rep. Tim Kelly, R-Red Wing, has taken up through House legislation - and adding more narcotics officers.