Entire police force in Goodhue quits after chief announces resignation

Published 8:44 am Tuesday, August 15, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Goodhue Mayor Ellen Anderson Buck says she will meet with the Goodhue County Sheriff’s Office to make sure the city continues to have law enforcement available after Aug. 24 when the officers officially leave.

During a meeting Monday night — that was originally supposed to be about police pay increases — the city council accepted the resignations of Police Chief Josh Smith and full-time officer Anthony Brecht, as well as the resignations of five part-time officers. The city has a population of about 1,300 people.

At the meeting, the mayor said she’s been meeting with the sheriff and his chief deputy, who assured her that they will take over all active cases and that the transition would be smooth.

Email newsletter signup

“He reassured us that there would always be coverage in the city of Goodhue,” Anderson Buck said. “That is not an issue. … they will be responding to calls.”

Anderson Buck said she’s also been talking with the League of Minnesota Cities about what other communities have done when they have lost their entire police force.

Last year, the sole officer who also served as police chief in Spring Grove, Minn. announced his retirement, and the city entered an agreement with Houston County to provide law enforcement. Also in 2022, the city of Morris disbanded its police department that had dwindled to just two officers.