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Hubbard County Sheriff Cory Aukes has surprised some motorists lately pulling them over on the highway. (Sarah Smith / Enterprise)

Aukes taking on night shifts and road patrol per campaign pledge

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Don't be surprised if you have a roadside encounter with Hubbard County Sheriff Cory Aukes.

Two months on the job, he's been quietly fulfilling a campaign promise to take his turn on road patrol, night shifts and traffic duty.

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He's surprised that people even notice.

"I'm no better or worse than the guys that work with me and I can get out there and do it as well," he said Tuesday afternoon after stopping a motorist on the Becker County line and running a records check.

Last month he worked a weekend of night shifts on patrol, pulling over drunken drivers.

It's a subtle nudge to the esprit de corps. Aukes had a reputation for being a hard worker as a sergeant, his troops universally said. He's now fulfilling a campaign promise to be out on the streets with his deputies.

He keeps in touch with what's going on in the county, but he also keeps in touch with his squad.

And if he's late to an out-of-town meeting, there's a good reason why.

"I was on my way to Nevis in an unmarked vehicle," he said. "When you're driving the speed limit people get antsy. This guy felt the need to pass me and I had a word with him.

"Just now I was west of town and was going to turn at the county line and this truck felt the need to pass me on the right and you can't be doing that. It's a very dangerous thing to do."

His low-key, matter-of-fact approach to policing has boosted morale in the department.

And while it may not boost the morale of surprised motorists, Aukes said he's so far issuing more warnings than tickets.

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Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers Hubbard County, courts and breaking news.

(218) 732-3364
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