Eveleth Police Department Member Sues City for Age Discrimination

By KBJR News 1

November 7, 2012 Updated Nov 8, 2012 at 12:02 PM CDT

Eveleth, MN (NNCNow.com) - A member of the Eveleth Police Department is suing the city for age discrimination.

Lieutenant Leroy Hilde, 52, claims that because of his age he wasn't chosen for Police Chief.

Eveleth city leaders interviewed applicants for Police Chief last February.

Hilde says he received the same application score as the candidate who was selected, Chief Tim Koivunen, but, according to the civil complaint, he was told the possiblity of his retirement was a factor in the decision not to hire him.

Hilde filed the lawsuit with the United States District Court and is seeking $75,000 in damages.

Hilde has been a member of the Eveleth Police Department for 29 years and is the second highest ranking officer, next to the current Chief.

The attorney representing the city said she is still gathering information, but says the city did not base its decision on age.

"Age did not have anything to do with the city's decision. Ultimately, the city chose the most qualified candidate for the position," said attorney Jana Sullivan, who is representing Eveleth.

The attorney representing Lieutenant LeRoy Hilde did not respond to request for a comment by news time.

Written for the web by Jennifer Austin.