How MSOP Keeps the Murder Machine Running: Big Money & A Little Nepotism Goes A Long Way

The below is OCEAN Newsletter Volume 1, Issue 9, Article 4 (Jan. 15, 2020) published by Russell J. Hatton & Daniel A. Wilson from the gulag in Moose Lake Minnesota.

The excessive power along with the absence of oversight at MSOP, has proved to be a deadly mixture for the clients. MSOP detainee, Raymond Messer committed suicide on Saturday, August 3, 2013. (MPLS Star Tribune 8/06/2013) Messer could no longer tolerate the madness of MSOP. MSOP client Chris Krych says:
My roommate Tim Yepma was a diabetic. He ate himself to freedom. I repeatedly reported to Clinical Supervisors, Tara Osborne, and Deb Thao, that intervention needed to happen for Yepma because he was killing himself. Tim Yepma died on Monday, January 28, 2019. There are also detainees who refuse to continue with terminal illness treatment. These are suicidal escapes from DHS Nepotism Hell.
Indeed.com is an employee review internet Web Site that provides a confidential forum for MSOP staff to voice their true feelings about MSOP.
“Helping others” is rarely mentioned on the site, because that is not what MSOP does. However, money seems to be a consistent motivation, repeated several times on the site. One Security Counselor says that at MSOP,
“There is little to no opportunities for advancement, but it is a steady paycheck . .. ”


A Recreation and Visit Supervisor at the St. Peter site, while employed at MSOP says, ” … great benefits for employees and 55 retirement age … ”
A Recreational and Visit Supervisor at St. Peter says “great benefits” working at MSOP.
A former Security Supervisor, says, ” … Benefits are great.” (is there an echo in here?)
For most MSOP employees, it’s just a job. For instance, a Treatment Assessment Psychologist, who would be a lead authority at MSOP, states blatantly that MSOP is “A place to work .. . If you are looking for a job, this is a job .. . ” This person was still employed at MSOP at the time he/she wrote this in April 2018.
A Security Counselor, and an esteemed “Lead Security Counselor,” both say that MSOP has, “good pay,” further reinforcing the general consensus that staff come to MSOP just for a pay check.
A Recreational Therapist from the Moose Lake site mentions that MSOP is “productive and rewarding.”
That‘s nice. However, this was not said in the context of his/her opportunity to help clients reintegrate back into society, which is, at least in theory, the point of treatment . . . isn’t it?
The next comment speaks directly about nepotism:
If you enjoy an environment of nepotism then this is the place for you. Terribly mismanaged. Most people use this as a stepping stone in their careers although may come out deeply damaged due to institutional abuse. The only good thing about this job is that it comes with state benefits . . . The funding is outrageous compared to that of victim services. This instruction goes to show how sad our state is where it is more lucrative to work with criminals versus assisting those victimized. By far working with management and co-workers was the worst. It was difficult to tell where the true evil was . . . Another echoes saying:
. . . you like to brown nose, try it. Better yet, if you are related to someone who works there, GO for it.
Nepotism is alive and well there. But if you are educated, hardworking, have experience and are looking for upward mobility, forget it. . . many a person ‘ s livelihood had been lost here . . .
On a positive note, one staff member, who works in the shop making signs, was kind enough to say, “I love working with both customers and clients.” Thank you anonymous MSOP staff member. However, I suggest you get out of here before the walls begin to really crumble.
Although the cohesion of money and family goes a long way when hiding corruption, there have been many MSOP staff members busted for many forms of abuse and misconduct at MSOP. For instance, guard Lindsay Wood got fired for having a relationship and getting pregnant by an MSOP detainee. (Duluth Tribune July 3 , 2011 ) .
Guard Andrew Rock also got fired for smuggling i n a cell phone for two clients. (See Pine Journal 11/05/2015 ) .
Clinician Amy Bronswick was fired fo r telling an MSOP client that she wanted to be his wife. (See MP LS Star Tribune 04/14/2013) .
Guard Michelle A. Hoover got fired for having a relationship and getting pregnant b y an MSOP detainee.
Clinician Gemma Watkins was also fired for writing love letters and having a relationship with an MSOP detainee.
Recreation Staff Jenifer Lee Keur (AKA Jenifer Lee Rogan) got questioned December 20 1 8 about her blatant relationship with an MSOP detainee, but left the facility before too much could be revealed.
Recreation Staff Marilyn Johnson got fired in 2008 for smuggling in a cell phone for an MSOP detainee.
Kristi L. Wagner and husband Joshua Robert Wagner work at MSOP. Joshua got fired along with Alyssa J . Fahlsing for having sex i n the facility.
MSOP administration has a limited pool to hire from. Those who work here now are either new and likely to be leave when they figure out what this is, or they are the left overs of the left overs and have absolutely seared their own consciousness ‘ s to j ustify coming to work every day.
OCEAN thought it was essential to begin making a public record of the two most important elements that maintain MSOP ‘ s power: Money and nepotism.
Nepotism has become quite the norm at MSOP and is sort-of old news. However, we think these solid networks have significantly affected due process at MSOP.
In addition, the high salaries paid to MSOP staff for doing near to nothing, except shop online while they are “working,” we also thought was worth documenting.
Anyone that has been working at MSOP for even a few weeks, probably knows the general intentions of MSOP staff. But if not, it will benefit them to know what prior, and even current employees, have said about MSOP.
Money and family seems to be the primary pillars of MSOP. The following information in this article concerning MSOP staff salaries comes from MSOP records made available to clients by the awesome power of the Freedom of Information Act. Whereas the information about staff relationships and nepotism comes from MSOP detainee, Chris Krych, a man who has been at MSOP for 14 years.
In 2 010, Facility Director Kevin Moser’s salary scale was listed as $33.65 – $48 . 25 an hour, for one position.
In 2 015 Moser is listed as having two positions with two salaries of $52 . 2 2 and $60. 15 per hour with his only credential being “Certification.” Then in 2 017 his salary was $54.87 and $63. 19 (still two checks). In 2 019 his salaries changed again to $46.87 and $65.90 an hour (still two checks). We have no idea if Moser is getting paid for both of these positions simultaneously.
Executive Clinical Director Jannine M. Hebert had a salary scale of$41.61 – $59.61 an hour in 2 010. By 2019 she was making $70.68. How does a Clinical Director of a “treatment center” get a raise without producing results? We encourage Minnesota tax-payers to contact her and ask her what she does to deserve so much from them: (651) 431-4377 jannine.hebert@state.mn.us. 444 Lafayette Road North, Saint Paul, Minnesota 55155- 0992
In 2 015, Clinical Director Peter D. Puffer (that’s right, we have two Clinical Directors) received $60.15 an hour. He also received multiple paid increases and by 2 019 he was making $65.90 an hour. Should individuals be getting raises? Ask them how they justify this. peter.d.puffer@state.mn.us.
Louis Stender received a pay scale of $33.65 – $48. 25 in 2 010. By 2 019 he was making $57.23 an hour. Stender used to be a warden at the DOC Moose Lake prison. Moser was a Captain. Dennis Benson, who was once the Executive Director of MSOP was many things in the DOC, including a Deputy Commissioner. These guys stick together.
Terrance (Terry) K. Kneisel is Moser’ s Assistant Facility Director at Moose Lake. His wife, Christine M. Kneisel works here, along with his brother, Louis Q. Kneisel. Terry gets $53.20 an hour. Christine gets $27.68 an hour. Louis gets $22.34 an hour.
Richard J. O’ Connor worked here with his son Richard J. O’ Connor Jr., and only a high school diploma, got promoted to Security Program Manager with an over $40. 00 an hour salary for his last few months of employment (so he could retire with a fatter pension?).
Scott Gary Benoit has worked here since 2 004. Scott’s wife, Laurel June Benoit, used to work here with him.
Laurel got $40.72 an hour and Scott gets $44.62 an hour.
Julie A. Johnson married Steven J. Sajdak and is now Julie Sajdak. Julie gets $ 25.37, and Steven gets $44.62.
Julie Rose and her husband Robert P. Rose work here along with son & daughter, Morgan and Michael respectively. Julie gets $30. 25, & Robert gets $41.61, an hour.
Donald Melvin Geil Jr., and his wife Jessica J. Geil, work here too. Donald gets $26.41, and Jessica gets $51.41 an hour.
Julianna L. Beavens got her daughter, Leanna Beavens, a job here. Leanna and her boyfriend (another staff) both quit and went to work for the Feds after job training (many work here to get training hours for jobs elsewhere – using DHS lifers as training subjects). Julianna gets $41.6 1 an hour.
Jennifer Louise Chesbrough used to work here and quit for a federal job at the Sandstone Federal prison, just like Leanna Beavens. Chesbrough use to date guard Troy Swartout. Many from the Swartout family have worked here and Brooke Swartout had recently gotten employed at MSOP.
Clinician Jaime L. Wuori (AKA Jaime Kozisek) found her husband Jeremy M. Wuori at MSOP. After she got her Social Worker License and a promotion to “Clinical Program Manager,” she quit in 2019.
Tayah Marie Johnson married guard Benjamin Zuk and now is Tayah Zuk. Tracy Marie Zuk and Logan S.
Zuk also work here and Tracy Zuk gets $42.59 an hour.
Allison M. Ecklund married guard Brian Collins, who no longer works at MSOP. Allison Collins gets $32.24 an hour. Jordon J. Collins works here too.
Amanda H. Torgerson and her husband Thome M. Torgerson, both quit last year (2018). Amanda got $29. 70, and Thorne got $39.89 an hour.
Jensina E. Rosen and her husband Tyler T. Rosen, both quit last year too. Jensina got $31.98, and Tyler got $23.41 an hour.
Husband and wife Cindy, K. Cherro, and Thomas L. Cherro employed at MSOP for over a decade.
Clinical Supervisor Courtney Jo Menten gets $49.46 an hour and husband Darian Emmanual Menten works here as well.
Keeping the flow of money elusive and confusing may be part of the scheme. Therefore, we asked our friend Randall Nelson to review MSOP’s bank ledger. Nelson studied at Pipestone Technical Institute as well as the American Institute of Banking. He is licensed in all lines of insurance and holds an associate’ s degree in banking. After looking at MSOP’s ledger, Nelson reported to OCEAN:
With what I have to consider at this time the following is to the best of my knowledge true and correct: The estimated calculations of the interest posted to the account indicate a variable interest is paid. Starting with November 2017 indicating a lower average collected balance and a higher return compared to December 2017 where the average collected balance was lower and the return higher.
Even if the interest was variable it is highly unlikely that this would be as significant a change as indicated at least by my first review. It also appears as though this account was started with petty cash in response to a client demand, then propagated with a series of questionable deposits to satisfy the untrained eye. What is the number assigned to this account? Where are the funds kept? Why is it that since the start of this statement [ and the 18 months duration of said] there has been no annual spend down and the amount has been either stagnant or varying slightly? Who posts the interests to this account? Why on June 13th of 2019 are there a total of 18 entries for the same vendor (Netflix) instead of one payment of $852.12? Did the vendor receive 18 entries for the individual amounts? I noticed a payment of $263. 90 to the Star Tribune was posted June 19th, 2019. This appears to be an annual subscription for our library and by itself looks innocent, however, no such payment was posted June of 2018, which makes this questionable. I would have expected to see an entry on June 19th (or thereabouts) of 2018 a similar payment for an annual subscription. No entry was indicated. On November 25th 2019 we questioned the department on the 13th of June expenditure of $3,692.60 to “SWANK MOTION Inc.” and they answered, simply, “This is an annual licensing agreement.” in writing the department. However, when we look back on June of 2018 we noticed no payment was made to the company. The “New Account Transfer[‘s]” in November of 2017 were established very late in the game with regard to the operations of MSOP in general. Where were these funds transferred from and why? Money issues like this just scratches the surface of some of the confusion at MSOP.
So this documents just some of the strong relational ties, as well as some of the motivations of those working at MSOP.
So, if you don’t like helping people, and you do like money, come apply at MSOP; that is, if you have any family members already working here ..

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