By Laurelle Walsh
The Winthrop Marshal’s Office’s most-recent hire, deputy Seth Carlson, turned in a letter of resignation on Sunday (Dec. 29), according to interim marshal Ken Bajema.
“He was still on probationary status,” said Bajema, “and it was determined that he was not a good fit for the town. I can’t go into the details at this time.”
“It’s complicated; there are several factors involved,” said Winthrop’s outgoing mayor, Dave Acheson. “It was a mutual decision. Seth has had a long and successful career in law enforcement, and we wish him the best in his continuing career,” Acheson added.
Carlson was hired by the Town of Winthrop in March 2013. During the one-year probationary period either party may terminate employment without cause, Bajema explained. Carlson’s resignation is effective immediately.
This leaves Bajema as the town’s sole police officer. Winthrop’s former marshal, David Dahlstrom, resigned last month to take an overseas job with the U.S. Army.
Bajema said that he would most likely not apply for the job of marshal, saying he would “like to see somebody else in there with more experience than I have.” This is the first job in law enforcement for Bajema, who was hired as deputy in 2010 and completed police academy training in 2011.
“Small-town policing is a unique job. It’s hard for officers used to going from call to call to wait around for something to happen,” Bajema said. “We want somebody with a commitment to the community and wants to stick around.”
In the mean time, Twisp officers will be providing extra coverage in Winthrop, Bajema said.
Winthrop will begin advertising for the marshal’s position this week, according to Acheson. “Sue [Langdalen — Winthrop’s in-coming mayor] is fully informed of the situation, and the hiring process for a new deputy will start shortly, depending on what she decides,” Acheson said.