By Esme Murphy

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — There soon will be a new Sheriff in town.

Metro Transit Sgt. David “Hutch” Hutchinson won a stunning upset last month over long-term Hennepin County incumbent Sheriff Rich Stanek.

When he takes over, Hutchinson is promising to handle undocumented people and relationships with federal immigration authorities differently.

Hutchinson will soon be heading up a department that has more than 800 employees and serves the 1.2 million people who live in Hennepin County. The Sheriff’s Department is also in charge of the Hennepin County Jail and the Sheriff’s water patrol, which enforces boating and safety regulations on major lakes.

Throughout his campaign, Hutchinson — who prefers to go by his nickname “Hutch” — criticized incumbent Sheriff Rich Stanek for cooperating too closely with ICE, the federal U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency.

“That was my whole campaign — treating everybody equally,” Hutchinson said. “We are not going to treat immigrants differently. We are working with the county attorney. We have an immigration attorney on staff and we are going through laws and seeing what we can do.”

On Friday the Minneapolis City Council gave the green light to a proposal to create a citywide ID card that residents could get regardless of their immigration status. Like Hutchinson, city leaders say they want to allow undocumented residents to more easily access services.

Esme Murphy

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