Kurt Ditzler files petition for Winnebago County Sheriff candidacy

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Updated November 27, 2017, 5:05 p.m.

UPDATE: WINNEBAGO COUNTY, Ill. (WIFR) - Candidacies for the March primary begin to take shape for the first day of filings to get on the 2018 ballot.

Retired Winnebago County chief deputy Kurt Ditzler turns in his petition on the first day of filing to add his name to the ballot for next March's Republican primary for Winnebago County sheriff.

Ditzler says there are several issues he wants to tackle if he wins election.

"The crime rate in Winnebago County and in Machesney Park where the sheriff has a contract is out of control and it's gone up significantly, and that's before any budget cuts or any personnel had been cut from the budget. We have budget issues within the sheriff's department that have to be resolved"


Posted September 12, 2017, 4:26 p.m.

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.