Minneapolis council approves plan for additional officers
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minneapolis City Council narrowly approved a $500,000 plan Friday to bring in outside police officers to help fill a staffing shortfall.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune reported the council passed the plan on a 7-6 vote. The plan now goes to Mayor Jacob Frey for his approval. The mayor has said he supports the proposal.
Police Chief Medaria Arradondo has said he needs 20 to 40 more officers to help. The additional officers will likely come from the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office and Metro Transit Police and help respond to 911 calls and violent crimes. The city would reimburse those agencies for their officers’ salaries and benefits.
Some council members earlier this week had questioned how an additional $500,000 would allow the Minneapolis department to reduce violent crime when the agency has already pulled back on some proactive programs to focus on responding to 911 calls. At one point Arradondo asked one of his opponents, Steve Fletcher, if he had a better idea to address rising violence.
As of Monday, the Minneapolis Police had 834 officers with 121 on leave. Some on leave have filed claims their suffering from trauma from responding to protests over George Floyd’s death in May. Floyd, who was Black, died on Memorial Day after a white Minneapolis officer pressed his knee into his neck for nearly eight minutes.