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Chief Stenson
Chief Stenson

Chief Stenson started his Law Enforcement career in 1980 with the Brooklyn Center Police Department as a Code Enforcement Officer.  Chief Stenson worked his first Police Officer position with the City of LeCenter.  After LeCenter, Chief Stenson worked at the Tracy Police Department as well as mall security.  Chief Stenson graduated from North Hennepin Community College.  In 1990 he was hired as a Police Officer with the City of Lindstrom and was offered the interim Chiefs position in June of 1991.  Since starting with Lindstrom, Chief Stenson has seen many programs develop within the department.  Some of these programs include Project Charlie, National Child Safety Council, Bike Safety, Halloween Safety, National Night Out and Community Watch Group.

Deputy Chief Schlumbohm
Deputy Chief Schlumbohm

Deputy Chief Schlumbohm was the chief of Police for the Chisago City Police Department. He had been with the Chisago City Police department for about 11 years before the two departments merged. Bill was a guiding force in the merger and became Deputy Chief up the creation of the Lakes Area Police Department. Deputy Chief has a family and lives in the Chisago lakes Area. Deputy Chief has a background in computer programming, which has been a great asset to law enforcement.


Officer Merchlewitz
Officer Merchlewitz

Officer Merchlewitz has been a Lindstrom Police Officer since 1994.  He started as a Community Service Officer in 1993.  In March of 1994 he became a part-time Officer and in June of 1994 went to full-time.  Officer Merchlewitz is a Field Training Officer with the department, an instructor in the operations of RADAR, certified in Intoxilyzer Operations and certified to operate LASER.  He works with Police Assistant Taylor on check investigations.  He teaches Project Charlie and has taught National Child Safety to the area youth.  Officer Merchlewitz has recently signed on with an area fire department as a Firefighter.

Detective Tougas
Officer Tougas

Detective Tougas has been in law enforcement since 1979.  He served as Chief of Police in Randall, MN from 1979 to 1990.  He also worked as a police officer in Taylors Falls, MN for 9 years.  He started working with the Lindstrom Police Department in June of 1999 as a police officer.  Detective Tougas is a Firearms Safety instructor, Snowmobile Safety instructor, ATV course instructor, D.A.R.E. instructor, certified Mountain Bicycle Officer, Intoxilyzer Operation, active in the Safe & Sober campaigns, a member of the National Ski Patrol and certified in Juvenile Restorative Justice Conferencing. Detective Tougas also was named the recipient of the Youth Service Bureau‚s James Trudeau Award in 2005 for his work with the youth specifically his involvement on the Juvenile Drug Court in Chisago County. Detective Tougas earned a DRE (Drug Recognition Expert) Certification in May of 2002.  Detective Tougas has been trained in Corner House interview techniques. Outside of Law Enforcement Tim enjoys Hunting, Fishing and Woodworking.

Officer Carlson

Officer Carlson was hired in 2005 and was appointed as a School Resource Officer. He is currenlty assigned to the patrol division on the midnight shift. Officer Carlson has a family and lives in the metro area, and is currently a DNR Fire Arms Safety Instructor as well as an DNR ATV Instructor. Officer Carlson previsouly enjoyed a successfull career in the oil industry before becoming a police officer. Officer Carlson enjoys time with his family and fishing.

Officer Spencer

Before becoming a Police Officer, Officer Spencer became an Intern with the Lakes Area Police Department in the summer of 2005. After completing his internship Officer Spencer applied for a Community Service Officer Position in 2006 and was appointed to that position by the Police Commission. In 2007 Officer Spencer became a Police Officer with L.A.P.D. when Officer Roettjer left. Officer Spencer had obtained his Part-Time Police Officer license and Worked as a Part-Time Officer for Lakes Area PD while completing his Minnesota Full-Time License requirements. Upon successfully completing his Minnesota License Requirements, Officer Spencer was appointed as a Full-Time Officer in September of 2007. Officer Spencer has a long time connection with the Chisago lakes Area spending his youthful years in the area. After graduating college Officer Spencer worked as an Officer in Wisconsin for a short time also.

Officer Kolbow

Before becoming a Lakes Area Police Officer, Officer Kolbow worked for the Sherburne County Sheriff's Office as a licensed Deputy working in the corrections division. Officer Kolbow joined Lakes Area Police in November of 2013. He is currently assigned as a School Resource Officer with the Chisago Lakes School district and is stationed at the Chisago Lakes Middle school.

Police Assistant Taylor

Assistant Taylor has been with the Lindstrom Police Department since 1995.  Assistant Taylor started out as a part-time Police Assistant.  However, as the department has grown, the need for a full-time position was realized.  Through a Cops grant the position became full-time.  Assistant Taylor does so much more than data entry.  There are many occasions when Assistant Taylor will take an initial complaint over the phone, she communicates with the officers over the radio, handles requests for information, processes bad check investigations, processes requests for gun permits and many times is the first person a member of the public sees when asking for a police officer at City Hall.  Assistant Taylor's duties are many and varied.  Assistant Taylorreally keeps things running smoothly.

Sergeant Varco
Sergeant Varco

Sergeant Varco was hired by the Chisago City Police Department February 11, 2000, and promoted to the rank of Sergeant in 2012.  Sergeant Varco attended Bemidji State University where he obtained a B.S. degree in Criminal Justice, and completed his skills training at Hibbing Community College.  Since beginning his employment with the Chisago City Police Department, Sergeant Varco had received training in, and is certified as an intoxilyzer operator, Simunition, firearms, use of force instructor, and snowmobile safety instructor. Sergeant Varco is also a certified field training officer.   While off duty, Sergeant Varco enjoys spending time on the water fishing, hunting, and snowmobiling.

Officer Paulsen
Officer Knutson

Officer Paulsen was hired as a full time officer with the Chisago City police department on July 29th, 2002.  Before being hired in Chisago City she spent six years as a military police officer in the Air Force, in Japan and Germany.   She has also worked for the Washington County Sheriffs office as a dispatcher, and the Columbia Heights police department as a records technician.  Officer Paulsen is a certified background investigator and D.A.R.E. instructor.  She is the recipient of the 2002, 2003 and 2004 MADD award for the Chisago City police department.

Officer Haller
Officer Haller

Officer Haller started with the Chisago City Police Department in 2003 and has continued with the Lakes Area Police Department. Officer Haller currently lives in the metro area and this is his first Police assignment.

Officer VanHorn

Chad VanHorn started his patrol duties with Lakes Area PD in December of 2006. Chad is currently a Taser instructor, and past Drug Recognition Officer. Chad currently covers our evening watch. Chad grew up in northern Minnesota and currently lives in Chisago County.

Sergeant Larson

Sergeant Larson hails from Wisconsin but attended college in Minnesota. Sergeant Larson was hired as an Officer in August of 2005, and promoted to the rank of Sergeant in 2012. Sergeant Larson has gone through many training courses to help detect impaired drivers including Standardized Field Sobriety Testing, and has also been trained in National Incident Management through FEMA.

Police Assistant Lind

Assistant Lind has worked as a Police Assistant for many years with the Chisago City police department prior to the creation of the Lakes Area Police Department. Assistant Lind lives in the Chisago Lakes Area with her husband and children. Assistant Lind  works Monday through Friday, 7:30 am to 4:00 pm. Her duties include Data Management, transcription, gun permits, first contact for inquiries, managing office supplies and criminal coding, just to name a few.



Transcriptionist Forsberg

Eileena Forsberg has been with the LAPD since June of 2012 as a part time Transcriptionist. Her prior work experience includes work as a legal secretary. Eileena lives in Chisago County with her husband and three boys.





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