Hiring at the McHenry County Sheriff’s Department

This comment from “Potential Candidate” under the article about former Deputy Sheriff Zane Seipler’s going back to work after almost three years in arbitration and in court seems worth sharing more broadly:

This may or may not be the right forum for this but the timing is dead-on.

Sheriff's deputies looking into a burglary on the McHenry Blacktop.

I’m on the current McHenry County Sheriff’s Officer’s hiring list.

I spoke with a few Officers who are out in the trenches doing their job every day for the citizens of McHenry County.

They all resonate the same message;

“Unless you are on the same page as the Sheriff (Nygren) you will almost never advance through the ranks, be chosen for Special Teams or assignments or be a top priority for attending training classes etc.”

I for one feel that Politics need to be left at the front door when overseeing County Employees doing their job for us and each member of the Department should be treated and advanced based on their performance, not personal feelings or revenge.

The whole hiring process for Sheriff’s Deputy is a “Front” for the Sheriff to hire Political friends, contributors and friends of friends.

A list of candidates is established in “Alphabetical Order” for those who pass the entrance examination and Physical Ability tests no matter how you scored on the exams.

The Sheriff chooses whom to hire off the list.

Just one more abuse of power that the Sheriff holds over “New Deputies” about to be hired.

The law of the land is that if you don’t conform, you’ll never advance.

It’s a shame that the County has to go through all this. The lives of people that want to serve the residents of McHenry County have been changed forever and that one man has absolute control of his employees in hiring, firing and advancement, even with the Merit Commission. It’s about time for a change.


Hiring at the McHenry County Sheriff’s Department — 10 Comments

  1. Would anybody like to know what the FBI’s take on the Sheriff’s Department and the Sheriff is???

    I’d love to share my story right here on Mr. Skinner’s blog, from a ‘front seat’ vantage point! Their lips to my ears…………!

    You would all be stunned!!

    Potential Candidate, I’d be seeking employment elsewhere if I were you.

  2. One of the “chosen” and blessed men made a supervisor — Greg Pyle!!

    That is why his IS IN the $100,000. annual salary range.

  3. Potential Candidate I don’t think you want to belong to Nygren’s flock of birds.

  4. Wish more people could think like you in McHenry county “Potential candidate” .

    You WILL be cop someday and a good one!

    People like the sheriff can only abuse their authority and conceal criminal activity for so long. He’s had a lot heat on him over the past several years.

    And now he’s on his way out.

    You see, at this very moment, there are some simpletons that call themselves cops over at mcsd trying to figure out who you are on that list.

    That’s what they do, not law enforcement.

    Stay the course, there is going to be a lot of job openings in the near future.

  5. The Sheriff’s Department should not be a politically driven position as it currently is.

    It obviously breeds corruption in a position for which safety is at risk.

    Lose-lose to the taxpayers of the county.

  6. Nygren took a good department and destroyed it.

    The morale of the department is at an all time low.

    Nobody cares!

    I’m glad I’m gone.

    hank heavens for a UNION contract or nobody would be safe.

    Especially supervisors becuase they have no protection being non union.

    I feel bad for all my good friends still there hoping for the day when a new Sheriff is ELECTED, not appointed or hand picked by the established network.

    Under the Sheriff’s before Nygren there was always some politics as there is in any police department especially an elected Sheriff’s office but Nygren took it to a new level.

    He thought he was KING not Sheriff.

    Supervisors became puppets.

    Anyone that stood up was smacked down.

    Everything was about him.

    He basically eliminated the Merit Commission and found ways to not use it so the Union (FOP) became your only safety net.

    Handing out his Sheriff Ball caps and little Sheriff Pins to his political contributors.

    Sheriff ADVISORS (Latino liaison) with business cards acting the big shot.

    People thought his POSSE was really a get of out jail card and told you so if they were stopped on the street.

    It was like working in some third world dictatorship with his name plastered on everything.

    Every department bus, boat, trailer, van has his name on it.

    Did he buy them as political billboards or are they COUNTY property?

    He loaded the department with his retired buddies from Crystal Lake Police even creating a position for his king pin Parth.

    He would try and suspend you for using a sick day while his undersheriff played more golf than he worked.

    It was a joke.

    He was never there.

    Deputies pay attention and know when the boss is there.

    Nygren appointed another undersheriff that everyone knew ran the department while Nygren was gone and only came back long enough to bully the troops.

    Now he has an Undersheriff that never worked a day as a patrol supervisor but was real good at golf outings.

    From deputy to Undersheriff in what four or five years?

    I think they call it the buddy system of promotion.

    If you didn’t work for Nygren politically, putting up signs, working at his golf outings, digging up dirt on fellow deputies, you’d never get ahead regardless of how hard you worked.

    Oh this person is just sour grapes etc.

    No I worked hard and kept my mouth shut.

    Now he’ll have his minions at work trying to figure out who I am.

    Maybe not.

    He has his house up north and his place in the sun and a big retirement plus another one coming for being Sheriff.

    He just has to get his boy AZ in place.

  7. Truly shocking!

    You mean there is a workplace in this county where if you aren’t on the same page as your boss you are less likely to get promoted?

    top the Presses!

  8. That’s the difference between the MERIT system and CIVIL service.

    The State police and Sheriff Departments operate under a MERIT system.

    This gives great latitude to the head honcho in making decisions about hiring and promotions.

    There are guys and gals that TESTED very well but never got promoted because the decision maker didn’t like them whereas some buffoon that passed the test get’s the nod.

    Civil Service goes my numeric scoring. Sometimes an idiot that tests well gets promoted over someone better qualified, that didn’t score a highly.

    In a perfect world, government should be devoid of politics.

    It is much like a friend of mine that had a nice plum job with the Secretary of States Office.

    He was so glad when Ryan left the SOS office.

    He said he would be given a packet of dinner tickets to some fund raiser and was bluntly told, either sell them or buy them yourself.

    Do you think he’d get a better job if he refused?

  9. There are so many people on the inside that really know what goes on within the sheriff’s office/the county board.

    And yet no one ( for example, Patrick Fitzgerald) outside of McHenry county seems to pay attention nor care.

    Chicago politicians have gone to jail for less than what has gone on outhere in the last 15 years.

    People look the other way and never stand up to these bullies.

    People have the power and its up to us now to vote them out and/or to turn them in!

    One issue that hampers how information gets to McHenry citizens is the lack of media outlets.

    We need more responsible journalists to report the unbiased truth about candidates, investigative reporting when shady activities are suspected.

    We are fortunate to be able to sound off/candidly express our opinions here without having them removed like the NWH when they don’t like what it says or reflects a shade of truth.

  10. I had a great time as a deputy for MCSD, until I heard from a religious deputy that I wasn’t going to make it through the FTO program because of my religious beliefs…that FTO was in the meeting where the Sgts & a couple other FTOs were apparently joking about it.

    The really funny part is that I’m an athiest!

    Sure, I went to a Christian school as a kid, but it never stuck.

    In retrospect, I guess I should should have contacted an attorney.

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