Anoka County Officials Investigate Hiring, Testing Process of 911 Dispatchers

Updated: 08/21/2014 10:10 PM By: Jay Kolls

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS has learned six Anoka County 911 dispatchers, which is nearly 20 percent of its staff, have recently quit and a series of internal emails indicate test scores for new job applicants have been changed.

The emails, between two 911 managers indicate there are four prospective job candidates who failed their oral exams with scores in the mid-60s. Then, in follow up emails, the two correspond with each other and an employee in Anoka County Human Resources discussing "miscalculations" in the scores for those individuals.

The manager of the the 911 Dispatch Center asks to have those scores changed, for all four job candidates, from the mid-60s to the mid-90s. Finally, the head of the 911 Dispatch Center tells her manager, in another email, that "perhaps it is best to not involve any others with this."

In addition to these questionable emails about test score changes, 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS has also learned six 911 dispatchers have quit in recent weeks.

We asked Anoka County for an explanation about the altered test scores, which is the oral exam portion of a series of tests to become job applicant finalist. An Anoka County spokesperson told us the manager did not have the authority to change the test scores and the problem has been fixed.

The spokesperson reassured us there are no unqualified job candidates for the 911 Dispatch Center because of the altered test scores. Anoka County is now in the process of trying to fill those six vacancies in the 911 Dispatch Center. They say staffing is not a problem right now and the County is still delivering necessary 911 dispatch resources.