Vilas County Sheriff Frank Tomlanovich has confirmed that county jail administrator Tim Evenson was recently placed on paid administrative leave.
The action against Evenson was taken March 12, The Lakeland Times has learned, and according to Tomlanovich, Evenson will remain on leave until the conclusion of an investigation into an "internal matter."
A source, whose identity will not be released because of concerns over possible retribution, told The Times that Evenson was "ordered and escorted" out of the sheriff's department March 12.
Tomlanovich would provide no other information other than the investigation is ongoing.
Vilas County human resources director Janna Kahl said she is not involved in the investigation which she said is being handled solely by the sheriff's department.
On March 26, The Times filed an open records request with Tomlanovich seeking documents and other information about Evenson, any past disciplinary action involving him and the internal investigation.
In the response to the request, sheriff's department confidential secretary Carol Krebs said, "Certain records responsive to this request pertain to a current internal investigation connected with the employment of Mr. Evenson. Therefore at this time the county must deny your request as it relates to the pending investigation until disposition of the investigation."
Evenson has been working with the Vilas County Sheriff's Department since 1994. In 2002, he was promoted to jail administrator and has been in that capacity since. He has also served as a coordinator and instructor for an annual basic jail officer academy held at the department in partnership with Nicolet Technical College.
Other records sought
During the request for records regarding the Evenson internal investigation, The Lakeland Times also sought records and other information in connection with the recent hiring of Chad Rosinski as a jailer for the county jail.
Two sources, and Tomlanovich himself, have confirmed that Rosinski is the sheriff's step-son. Tomlanovich said that Rosinski was hired recently as a limited-time-employment full-time employee and serves as a jailer in the county jail.
Kahl said the county has restrictions on the hiring of employees who will be directly supervised by another relative. Rosinski's direct supervisor, however, would be Evenson, when he is not on paid administrative leave.
Rosinski, when filling out required paperwork for his job application with the jail, stated that he had been convicted in 1997 in Vilas County Circuit Court on misdemeanor charges of disorderly conduct, battery and fourth degree sexual assault.
Tomlanovich said his department has restrictions against hiring convicted felons, but will hire individuals with criminal records "as long as they are misdemeanors, they are not pending and not real recent."
Tomlanovich said his department has in the past been strictly in charge of hiring new employees, but since the recent hiring of the county human resources director the process is "evolving."
Joe VanDeLaarschot may be reached at email@example.com.
Posted: Friday, September 21, 2012
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Sounds like it is "evolving" as long as it benefits a relative. I hold Human Resources to blame for this one. Someone stand-up!