A recent dispute over city construction resulted in a police report filed against Casper City Councilman Craig Hedquist.
City Engineer Andrew Beamer accused Hedquist of threatening him at an Aug. 28 meeting. A discussion regarding the closing of Coffman Avenue and Poplar Street reportedly prompted the conflict.
According to a police report obtained at the Star-Tribune’s request, Beamer said he advised Hedquist that if Coffman was to be closed off then Poplar needed to be opened up for traffic. To this, Hedquist allegedly stated, “You going to pay?”
Hedquist is the owner of Hedquist Construction, a non-building construction contractor that often does work for the city.
When the topic returned again to closing off Coffman, Beamer told an officer that Hedquist again stated, “You guys going to start paying on time, b---- ?”
Beamer said he reminded Hedquist that they’d already had this discussion. To this, Hedquist reportedly “puffed up his chest, [stepped] towards Beamer in a threatening manner,” and said, “Are you going to stand up, b---- ?”
Beamer said he replied, “Excuse me?” At this, Hedquist said, “You heard me,” the report states.
Beamer said at this point Hedquist made sure everyone understood that they were
talking with Craig Hedquist of Hedquist Construction, and not Craig Hedquist, city councilman.
Casper Police Chief Chris Walsh asked Beamer on Wednesday if he would like to proceed with the prosecution of Hedquist for the charge of breach of peace. Beamer declined to move forward. The police case is now closed.
Casper City Manager John Patterson said he was aware of the incident but was not present. When asked if any further action would be taken, Patterson said he had an obligation to ensure that city employees have a safe workplace.
“We are investigating the incident you referred to, and that could possibly lead to further action,” he said.
Hedquist’s attorney, Michael Lansing, said that there was an internal investigation being conducted by the city of Casper, but declined to comment further.
A message left for Beamer on Monday afternoon was not returned.
When Hedquist ran for city council, some opponents questioned whether his candidacy was a conflict of interest because his construction company is a large contractor for the city. At the time, Hedquist denied that his position would be an issue.