Jared Taylor

During an off-duty fight in 2012, Taylor put a man in a chokehold until he fell unconscious. The man turned out to be a Northfield police officer. Taylor resigned from the Bloomington Police Department, and a jury found him guilty of assault and disorderly conduct. But he kept his state police license and now works as a part-time officer in Madison Lake.

Jason Elmore

Elmore, the former police chief of Watkins, Minn., has been convicted of assault, violating a harassment restraining order and drunken driving. He has also been subject to four harassment restraining orders in the past decade. He no longer works as a police officer, but the POST Board never revoked his state license, and he uses it in marketing materials to promote his firearms training business, XTREMEasures LLC, which is certified by the state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

Tom Bernardson Jr.

After an altercation at the Shortstop Bar & Grill in Fridley in 2010, Bernardson, a Minneapolis police officer, punched a man unconscious, sending him to the hospital with a concussion. He was convicted of misdemeanor fifth-degree assault; the Minneapolis department suspended him, but he kept his state license and his job.

William Woodis and Christopher Bennett

Minneapolis police officers Woodis, left, and Bennett were convicted of disorderly conduct in 2012 after being charged in the assault of two black men in what police reports describe as a racially-charged attack outside Bogart’s Place in Apple Valley. Both received suspensions and Woodis later retired. Bennett retained his state license and remains on the force. He has been subject to 16 internal investigations — 11 were closed without discipline; three involved ethics violations for which he received suspensions, and two remain open.

Taylor Fenrich

Fenrich, a Meeker County sheriff’s deputy, snapped during an office squabble over politics in 2015. He pulled his Taser on a police chief from a neighboring town and stunned him with a jolt of electricity to the neck. Fenrich was fired and convicted of misdemeanor fifth-degree assault but did not lose his state license. He is now a part-time officer in Atwater.

Thomas Davis

Davis, a deputy with the Clearwater County Sheriff’s Office, left a bachelor party in 2015 and wandered intoxicated into the home of a local woman, and then into her second floor bedroom saying he was “just here to party.” Terrified, the woman called 911 and grabbed deer antlers to defend herself. Davis was convicted of one misdemeanor count each of trespass and disorderly conduct. He remains on the force.

Steven J. Brown

Brown was working in Anoka County corrections in 1997 when he was arrested for firing a .38 Special revolver in his fiancee’s driveway during a mental health crisis. When the county announced plans to fire him for the incident, Brown resigned. He was convicted of reckless discharge of a firearm, a gross misdemeanor, but did not lose his state license. He now works part-time as a patrol officer with the Minnesota State Fair Police Department.

Shane Mikkelson

Mikkelson was an Apple Valley police officer in 2002 and on-duty when he ran a red light while pursuing a car and crashed into another vehicle, killing the pregnant driver and seriously injuring her husband. After the city fired him, an arbitrator ruled that the chase was “highly risky” and “entirely unnecessary”; a grand jury charged him with three misdemeanors. Mikkelson pleaded guilty to misdemeanor inattentive driving and kept his police license. Today he is police chief in Osseo.

Kevin Sullivan

Sullivan, a St. Paul police officer, got into an off-duty brawl outside Trappers Bar & Grill in Lino Lakes in 2011 and eventually pleaded guilty to misdemeanor disorderly conduct. He got a stay of adjudication, meaning that after he met the court’s conditions the case was dismissed with no conviction. Five months later, while still on probation, Sullivan and two other undercover officers chased an unarmed man from a suspicious vehicle and beat him severely. The man was hospitalized with a fractured skull, nose and eye socket, and the city of St. Paul paid $95,000 to settle his claims. Sullivan retained his state license and remains on the St. Paul force.


Minnesota has four classes of criminal conviction; not all trigger a review.
Petty Misdemeanor * Speeding No
Misdemeanor First-time DWI, disorderly conduct In select few cases; may or may not result in discipline.
Gross Misdemeanor Prostitution, second-time DWI Yes; may or may not result in discipline
Felony Aggravated assault, drug dealing Automatic license revocation
* The Star Tribune excluded petty misdemeanors from its analysis, along with hunting and fishing violations and nearly all traffic offenses.