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Complaint made against assistant football coach in Alexandria

Alexandria Public School officials say that as of Sept. 1, Kevin Engebretson is no longer coaching after a complaint was made against him on Aug. 31.

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Alexandria assistant coach Kevin Engebretson talks with senior Cody Branson during the Cardinals' game against Bemidji on Sept. 13. Alexandria goes on the road this week to Willmar looking to bounce back from its first loss of the season. (Eric Morken / Echo Press)
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ALEXANDRIA — As of Sept. 1, 2022, an assistant Alexandria Area High School football coach is no longer coaching for Alexandria Public Schools.

In an email sent to AAHS football parents by Superintendent Rick Sansted on Sept. 6, a complaint was made on Wednesday, Aug. 31, against Kevin Engebretson, who has been an assistant coach in the Alexandria area for several years. Engebretson coached defensive backs for the Cardinals.

According to the email, the matter was then reported to law enforcement and the school district was fully cooperating with the investigation.

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In his email, Sansted said, “As always, our priority is supporting our students and families. We encourage you (parents) to talk with your child regarding their experience with Mr. Engebretson. If you have any concerns, please contact Jessie Hjelle, director of Human Resources at 320-762-2141, ext. 4204 or Det. Sgt. Tony Kuhnua #113, Alexandria Police Department, 320-759-3713.”

In addition, he said that students needing additional support are welcome to speak with a school mental health professional at any time. Or they can contact Chad Duwenhoegger, AAHS principal, if needed. He can be reached via email at cduwenhoegger@alexschools.org or 320-762-2142, ext. 4525.

“Please be assured that the safety and well-being of our students remains a top priority and the district is committed to supporting our students in any manner needed,” said Sansted in the email.

In information that was sent to all parents on Sept. 15, Sansted noted that state and federal laws that govern personnel and student information limits what the District can release regarding this matter.

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The newspaper called and texted Engebretson, but as of 1 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 14, he did not respond.

Charges may be pending, but as it is an open investigation, no further information was available at this time.

Celeste Edenloff is the special projects lead and a reporter for the Alexandria Echo Press. She has lived in the Alexandria Lakes Area since 1997. She first worked for the Echo Press as a reporter from 1999 to 2011, and returned in 2016 to once again report on the community she calls home.
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