For the first time the Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa will have a full time sheriff's deputy patrolling the reservation.
Cook County Sheriff Mark Falk said an incident last year sparked concerns about potential gang activity on the Grand Portage Reservation, at the far tip of Minnesota's Arrowhead region. With seven deputies patrolling the entire county, Falk told the tribal council there was only so much he could do.
The Grand Portage band agreed to fund a full-time deputy, along with purchasing a vehicle, equipment, and office space. The new deputy began training Monday. Greg Gentz, a former Minneapolis police officer, will begin patrolling the reservation in mid-February.
Tribal elders have asked for a larger law enforcement presence.
"Many of the community members felt that doing something like that would just make the community much more safer, and people feel more comfortable," John Morrin, vice chairman of the Grand Portage Tribal Council.