Sioux Falls fires Fire Chief Jim Sideras, search warrant issued

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KSFY) - UPDATE 9:38PM:
Sioux Falls Fire Chief Jim Sideras has been fired after multiple authorities executed a search warrant on his Sioux Falls home Tuesday.

We don't exactly know what they found or what they were even looking for at this time, but it has cost the retiring Chief his job.

Neighbors tell us several police cars, both marked and unmarked, spent several hours at the home near east 49th and South Southeastern Avenue Tuesday morning.

“Couldn't believe it,” neighbor Jeff Riley stated.

People who live near Jim Sideras say they were shocked to hear that law enforcement executed a search warrant at his home Tuesday.

“I mean he would be the last person would expect to be involved in an investigation going on. Don't know Jim real well, but I wave at him when he drives by every day and make small talk here and there,” Riley explained.

Another man who lives on Sideras's street says several vehicles pulled up to the property around 9:30 in the morning.
He says Law enforcement officers entered the garage and he heard them say the words search warrant.

“We haven't been given any information on the City Council as to what actually has played out with Jim Sideras,” City Councilor Theresa Stehly said.

A press release from the city explained that Sideras's retirement will begin Tuesday, instead of at the end of June, which was formally announced last month.
Sideras worked as a firefighter for the city for nearly 34 years.

“Let me say that my experience with him has been always so positive. He's always been very kind to me as a City Council member. I know he's a very well respected employee within our Sioux Falls city,” Stehly stated.

Back in 2014, former firefighter Patrick Warren plead guilty to illegally accessing Sideras's computer, hacking into personal files.
No one has said if this search warrant was connected to this incident.

“I would just ask the citizens to offer a prayer up for Jim and his family right now and for our community. We don't know what's really been happening, but whatever it is we will get through this,” Stehly said.
The Minnehaha County Sheriff could not say when more information about this investigation would be released.
Division Chief Brad Goodroad has been selected to serve as the interim Fire Chief.
City officials say the search for a new Chief is already underway.

UPDATE AT 5:30PM:
In a news release Tuesday evening, Sioux Falls Mayor Mike Huether announced Fire Rescue Chief Jim Sideras’ last day of employment with the City of Sioux Falls is Tuesday, May 2, 2017.

Huether says Division Chief Brad Goodroad will serve as interim Fire Chief until the City can conclude the employment process for selecting the next Fire Chief which is already underway.

Sideras was employed from August 29, 1983, through May 2, 2017. He was appointed Fire Chief on July 21, 2011. The City of Sioux Falls will have no further comment regarding this matter.

EARLIER:
The South Dakota Attorney General's Office confirmed to KSFY News that a search warrant was conducted Tuesday at a residence on the 4400 block of S. Magnolia Avenue in Sioux Falls.

The warrant was served by the Minnehaha County Sheriff's Office and the Division of Criminal Investigation as part of an ongoing investigation.

Public records show the home is occupied by Sioux Falls Fire Rescue Chief Jim Sideras.

On April 11, Sideras announced he would retire from Sioux Falls Fire Rescue in June after nearly 34 years of service.

KSFY News has reached out to Sideras and Sioux Falls Mayor Mike Huether for comment and is waiting for a response.

This is a developing story. Check back with KSFY News for updates.