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Kenyon police chief calls allegations 'frivolous'

KENYON, Minn. -- A Kenyon police chief has responded to a federal lawsuit filed against him, calling the allegations "frivolous," alleging defamation and asking for $10,000 in damages.

Lee Sjolander, along with his lawyer, Jon Iverson, filed a response Tuesday to the lawsuit brought against him by Richard Thissen in June.

Thissen is alleging that Sjolander, along with Minnesota State Trooper Troy Siems, deprived him of his civil rights by using excessive force to arrest him in two separate incidents in 2009.

"Defendant denies Plaintiff Thissen's frivolous allegations in their entirety," Tuesday's filing says.

Sjolander's response also states that he did not arrest Thissen in June 2009, as was stated in the original filing.

Instead, the only time Sjolander arrested Thissen was in November 2010, and "allegations of excessive force ... are fraudulent," the response says.

Siems has until Aug. 15 to file a response.

Thissen's original complaint outlines two counts civil rights violations and one count of conspiracy to violate civil rights.

Thissen is asking for an amount exceeding $75,000 for "mental anguish, pain and suffering and humiliation," attorneys' fees and other damages.