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Former Shakopee superintendent imprisoned for soliciting a bribe

He sought personal benefits in exchange for giving school contracts.

The former superintendent of the Shakopee School District will be spending some time in prison after being convicted of soliciting bribes.

Rodney Thompson, 53, was sentenced to 24 months in prison at U.S. District Court in St. Paul this week, having pleaded guilty in November.

The court heard that from 2011 through June 2017, while he was the superintendent of the Shakopee School District, Thompson used his position to obtain personal benefits from companies bidding for schools contracts.

According to the Minnesota U.S. Attorney's Office, Thompson solicited home improvement projects, personal travel purchases, and tickets to sporting events in exchange for awarding contracts to a certain company.

This included $44,000-worth of remodeling work and basement improvements at his Shakopee house, which was carried out over a five-year period.

The company also spent more than $5,000 for Thompson to attend Vikings, Timberwolves and Twins games, as well as a stay at a luxury hotel in Nashville.

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"Mr. Thompson abused his position of trust throughout his entire tenure with the Shakopee School District. And now, his greedy and corrupt dealings have earned him a prison sentence," said U.S. Attorney Erica H. MacDonald.

The case was brought following an investigation by the FBI, in collaboration with the Scott County Attorney's Office, Shakopee Police Department, and the Department of Justice.

"Today’s sentence of Mr. Thompson demonstrates our collective commitment to hold public officials accountable," said Jill Sanborn, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Minneapolis Division, on Friday.

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