Shawano police officer joins sheriff’s race

Three candidates now declared for November election

A Shawano police officer and former county sheriff’s detective has joined the race for Shawano County sheriff.

Incumbent Adam Bieber is seeking a second four-year term and is already facing a challenge for the Republican nomination from former chief deputy John Gutho, who retired from the sheriff’s department in January 2016.

Shawano police officer Keith Sorlie recently declared his candidacy for the sheriff’s office as an Independent.

Sorlie had been with the sheriff’s department for 20 years before leaving to join the city department in December 2015.

The filing period opened on April 15, which was the first day candidates could circulate nomination papers.

The candidates have until June 1 at 5 p.m. to return at least 200 signatures in support of their nominations. The maximum the county clerk will accept is 400 signatures.

With two of the candidates so far both running as Republicans, a primary will be needed on Aug. 14.

The general election takes place on Nov. 6, which would pit Sorlie against either Bieber or Gutho.

Sorlie began his law enforcement career in November 1991 as an inspector, then trooper with the Wisconsin State Patrol.

He started with the Shawano County Sheriff’s Department in August 1995 as a patrol deputy and was promoted to detective in July 2000.

Bieber was a Shawano police officer starting in 2003 until he challenged and defeated former sheriff Randy Wright in the 2014 election.

Gutho started with the sheriff’s office in 1988 as a jailer, then moved up through dispatch, patrol and the captain’s position before serving for eight years as chief deputy.