LE CENTER — Le Sueur County Sheriff Tom Doherty will retire at the end of January he told the County Board on Tuesday.
Doherty, the sheriff since 2010 and a county employee for almost 37 years, said he was stepping down to let his successor shape the future of the department.
Doherty said he planned not to run for the seat again next year, so upon Jail Administrator Larry Sykes’ recent resignation he decided to let the new sheriff choose his own staff.
“I couldn’t put myself into decisions that will move Le Sueur County into the future,” Doherty said.
Doherty recommended that Chief Deputy David Tietz be named the interim sheriff, and the County Board agreed. Tietz has been the chief deputy for four years and worked at the county for about 27 years.
Doherty, 55, said Tietz is a man of common sense who’s excelled at every task he’s taken on.
“I believe with all my heart he’d make an outstanding sheriff,” Doherty said.
Board Chair Steve Rohlfing praised Tietz, too, telling him, “The people that know you know you’ll do a great job for this county.”
If he chooses to run, Tietz will have to defend the seat during next fall’s election.
Brett Mason, a 12-year veteran of the department, will replace Tietz as chief deputy.
Doherty, a Le Sueur native, said some of the highlights of his tenure included a gang of burglars he helped catch in the ‘90s and his training at the FBI Academy in 1997. He also remembers the stolen Corvette he helped find just a month before the statute of limitations expired.
Doherty joined the sheriff’s office as a dispatcher and worked his way up the department to become sheriff in 2010, when his predecessor resigned.