WINNEBAGO COUNTY, Ill. (WIFR) – Winnebago County Sheriff Gary Caruana will face competition in next year’s primary with retired chief deputy of Winnebago County, Kurt Ditzler, announcing his candidacy.
Ditzler says his 31-years in law enforcement as a former Rockford Police Officer and his experience in the sheriff’s office qualify him for the job. He says a change is needed at the top with a rise in crime, budget issues within the county, and the politics that he sees inside the department. Ditzler says if he’s elected he will continue the tradition of collaborating with surrounding departments on investigations.
“We’ve always worked together with the Rockford Police, the Illinois State Police, and surrounding agencies. Not that we’re the big brother, but things like our crime scene services and investigators are things that some of the smaller departments don’t have and they need to have that resource available,” says Ditzler.
Back in 2014, Sheriff Caruana ran as a Republican, beating Robert Springer for the job with nearly 58% of the vote.