Former Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher has spent months criticizing the current sheriff.
He’s attacked Sheriff Jack Serier on everything from staffing at the county jail to his residency.
On Tuesday, Fletcher put his words into action and announced he’ll run for his former job.
Mike Martin, assistant director of emergency management for the University of Minnesota, pulled out of the race and said he’ll support Fletcher’s campaign.
“I just didn’t get the traction that I think I need to be able to move forward in the process,” Martin said.
“[Fletcher] has the experience running the sheriff’s office. He has support internally in the sheriff’s office.”
Martin said he will work on Fletcher’s campaign but that there has been no talk of whether he would be brought into the Sheriff’s Office should Fletcher win.
Fletcher’s goals include reforming detention practices, “immediate” use of body cameras, creating new ways to hire officers who don’t have previous experience in the field and promoting more women into leadership roles.
“We’re at a critical time in criminal justice,” Fletcher said. “We need to restore public trust of the law enforcement system in general.”
Fletcher served as Ramsey County sheriff for 16 years until losing re-election in 2010 to Matt Bostrom.
The DFL-endorsed Serier wants to improve mental health services in the criminal justice system and touted hiring two mental health social workers for the county jail.
The Ramsey County Board appointed Serier to replace Bostrom, who retired early.
Serier noted his accomplishments since becoming sheriff last year: More than half of the new correctional officer and deputy hires have been people of color and women, and the office has its first female chief deputy and a black undersheriff.
“Sheriff Serier has made a lifetime commitment to service, fairness, innovation, and protection for all,” his campaign said in a statement.