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Chasing trouble in Iowa

Owen Canfield Modified: July 19, 2013 at 2:25 pm •  Published: July 19, 2013

Payback or proper punishment? Depends on who you talk to in Iowa, where a senior criminal investigator is out of a job.

Agent Larry Hedlund, a 25-year veteran of the state agency, got into trouble after complaining about a speeding SUV. Turns out the vehicle was carrying the governor and lieutenant governor on their way to an engagement.

Hedlund started a pursuit in his state-issued car. A trooper who assisted eventually saw it was another trooper at the wheel and didn’t make a stop. Hedlund complained to superiors that the speeding and chase put others at risk. He said the governor shouldn’t be above the law.

Following an investigation Hedlund was fired, reportedly for driving his government vehicle on a vacation day, making “negative and disrespectful” comments about his agency director in emails, and addressing the man “in a disrespectful tone” during a conference call.

Hedlund says most of the things cited happened before his complaint about the governor. Once he did that, “everything changed,” he said. The story isn’t over. Hedlund’s attorney promises to file a wrongful termination lawsuit.


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