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Sheriff taking medical leave

By Staff | Nov 2, 2012

The Pierce County sheriff will be on medical leave for the rest of the calendar year. Sheriff Matt Lunde informed the Pierce County Commission in a letter that he will be taking the leave to deal with medical issues.

At a special meeting on Oct. 22, the commission voted to put Deputy Josh Siegler as the interim sheriff while Lunde is on leave and empowered him to hire a new deputy to bring the sheriff’s office up to full staff in Lunde’s absence.

The commission expressed full confidence in Siegler, who has been a deputy in the office for more than four years. He was also a deputy in Benson County for four years and is an Iraq war veteran.

“Thanks for stepping up to the plate,” commission chair Mike Christenson said as the half hour meeting concluded.

Siegler did say it would take some time to adjust to some of the administrative duties he would be taking on, but said he has good relationships with sheriffs in adjoining counties, who he could rely on for advice and information.

The commission also voted to bring Siegler’s salary up to the sheriff’s current level while he is performing those duties.

Lunde, in his letter to the commission, said he will return earlier if possible, but is not scheduled to return until Jan. 1, 2013.

Pierce County State’s Attorney Galen Mack advised the commission it was important to keep Lunde up to date in writing on activities and decisions made in his absence.

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