Law Enforcement

Information updated March 2020

“To keep and preserve the peace of the county.” In Minnesota, each county has a sheriff who is elected to office by citizens of that county to a four-year term. The sheriff is the chief law enforcement officer within the county.

The Wright County Sheriff’s Office is the third largest sheriff’s office in Minnesota. It provides law enforcement services to the unincorporated areas of the county and contract police services with 13 cities in the county. There are five divisions within the Sheriff’s Office: Patrol, Criminal Investigations, Operations, Business Management and Corrections.  Each divisions is broken down into smaller units such as: administration, court security, communications, community services, detective, emergency management, emergency response team, k-9, special investigations, school resource, recreational services, civil/warrants/transports, and traffic enforcement.

Current Sheriff Sean Deringer began his service to Wright County in 1997 as a deputy sheriff. Prior to being elected sheriff in 2018, he served as a patrol deputy, drug investigator, detective, patrol sergeant, lieutenant and patrol captain. He grew up in central North Dakota. He is married, has two children, and resides in Maple Lake.

Wright County’s location just west of the Twin City metropolitan area has contributed to its rapid growth in recent years. The sheriff’s office has continued to meet the challenge by providing quality law enforcement services to the citizens of the county.

Contracting with the sheriff’s office

Wright County began offering contract law enforcement services in 1970 in the city of Cokato. The cities of Waverly, Delano, and Monticello followed shortly thereafter. Presently, the Wright County Sheriff’s Office provides contract law enforcement services to 13 of the 17 cities in Wright County. Only the Wright County cities of Annandale, Buffalo, and Howard Lake have their own police departments.

The contract cities pay an hourly fee as set by the county board for the number of hours of coverage they want. Delano contracts for an average of 16 hours per day, in addition to having a school resource officer. The regular contracted hours total 5,840 hours of coverage per year within the community. Quadrant coverage by the sheriff’s office also ensures that emergencies are responded to 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The cost of the contract includes the salary and benefits for the assigned deputy, the fully-equipped squad car and all related law enforcement equipment and supplies, prosecution by the Wright County Attorney’s Office, the Criminal Investigations Unit, evidence processed by the Major Crimes Investigation Unit and Mid-West Forensic Lab, Wright County Sheriff’s Office Emergency Response Team, Recreational Services Unit and Digital Forensics Unit, Civil Process and Transport Unit, operating the Wright County Jail, and clerical services.

The Wright County Sheriff’s Office can be reached at (763) 682-1162, and is located at 3800 Braddock Ave NE, Buffalo, MN 55313-1197.

West Hennepin Public Safety

West Hennepin Public Safety (WHPS) is a joint-powers agreement with the cities of Maple Plain and Independence, just east of Delano, for police services. Police can be reached at (763) 479-0500. Its office is located at 1918 Co. Rd. 90, Maple Plain, MN 55359. The director is Gary Kroells.

In an emergency in any jurisdiction, DIAL 911.