Wright sheriff candidate ‘proud’ of turning life around


Stacy Braun now sober since 2008 DWI arrest

Nov. 11, 2008, marked a dark day for Stacy Braun.

A cop and member of the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office, Braun was pulled over in Otsego near his home. He had been drinking and was subsequently arrested for DWI.

Five years later, Braun, a candidate for Wright County Sheriff, said he is actually thankful he was arrested, because it changed his life for the better. He has been sober since then.

“Shortly after my arrest, I went in for an alcohol evaluation and they suggested I go to treatment,” Braun said. “I completed treatment, I made all my court appearances. I pled guilty, paid the fine, completed sentencing and probation as directed by the courts and I have been without alcohol and sober for five years. It’s the best thing that ever happened to me, I hate to say it.”

Not only is Braun thankful for the life-changing event, he said he publicly speaks to others about his situation, hoping they learn from his experience.

“A lot of people are aware of it,” Braun said. “I made the news, I was all over the internet. I understand, but it was very difficult for me and my friends and family. I used it as a learning experience and I moved forward from there. I’ve got nothing to hide. I’m all about transparency.”

Braun said his arrest was a “black eye” for the sheriff’s office, but that his colleagues were very supportive about his turnaround.

“I’m a man of overabundance of integrity and pride, and my arrest was a huge shot to both of those,” he said. “Once squared away, things were much easier at work, and the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office was very supportive.”

He said his experience has moved him to where he is today, and that it helped him personally and professionally.

With his career back on track, the Wright County resident of 36 years and Hennepin Sheriff member for 21 years said he looks forward to his campaign for the Wright County sheriff’s position currently held by Joe Hagerty. Braun, Hagerty and challenger Bruce Doney will square off in the primary election Aug. 12, with two candidates then moving on to the general election Nov. 4.

“The first few years (after the arrest), I’m not going to lie, I was embarrassed,” Braun said. “But now I’m well beyond that and very proud of who I am. I do get out and publicly speak about my situation. It was a huge change in my life, and I wish it would have come sooner.”