City says Dilworth Police Chief’s tweets don’t violate its social media policy
DILWORTH, Minn. (KVRR) – We have a follow-up to our story from December on the Twitter account of Dilworth Police Chief Ty Sharpe.
Dilworth Vice Mayor Julie Nash says tweets sent from the @LordTySharpe Twitter account were reviewed by the city. She says the tweets were sent by Sharpe’s personal account while he was off-duty and they do not violate the city’s social media policy. Nash says the messages “Don’t express views of City Council or the city.” She adds no one brought up the issue at any City Council meeting.
Executive Director of the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations Jaylani Hussein called for Sharpe’s immediate firing in December. He sent an email to Dilworth City Council Members and Mayor Chad Olson days after our story ran demanding an investigation.
“It is our understanding that the activity took place off duty and the tweets in question were posted from a private Twitter account unaffiliated with the City of Dilworth. These tweets do not express the views of the Dilworth City Council or the City of Dilworth. We will continue to monitor the situation,” Olson responded.
Those messages include the retweet of a picture of President Biden in a turban with the caption “Taliban Employee of the Month.” Sharpe’s Twitter account also included a post calling Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar “the queen of incest.”
Sharpe told me in December his account was hacked and he didn’t send those tweets.
KVRR received emails and texts sent from city employees regarding Chief Sharpe after an open records request.
A text from a redacted name to Sharpe says they read our original story saying “Nothing coming from this.” and “Do a press conference while you ride up in the porsche wearing the folex.”
Another message on the day the original story ran from a redacted name to Sharpe says: Redacted “You ok? Any death threats? KVRR just broke the story tonight.”
Redacted “Do you need help with anything?”
Sharpe “No. Not yet.”
Redacted “I can always send (Redacted) over to scare the media away.”
The city cited Minnesota personal data laws as to why the names are redacted. The statute says “the individual is or was an employee of or an applicant for employment by, performs services on a voluntary basis for, or acts as an independent contractor with a government entity.”
Some emails regarding Sharpe weren’t shared with KVRR as the city cited attorney client privilege.
KVRR left a voicemail and sent an email to Chief Sharpe asking for a comment on the city saying he didn’t violate the city’s social media policy, but we haven’t heard back.