Minneapolis City Council: We're Dismantling the Police

Councilors pledge to build a new public-safety system
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 7, 2020 5:35 PM CDT
Minneapolis City Council: We're Dismantling the Police
Police officers deploy to disperse protesters in the Target parking lot near the Minneapolis 3rd Police Precinct, following a rally for George Floyd on Tuesday, May 26, 2020, in Minneapolis. .   (Richard Tsong-Taatarii/Star Tribune via AP)

A veto-proof majority of nine Minneapolis City Council members vowed Sunday to "dismantle" the city's police department, the New York Times reports. Standing on a hill before hundreds of people, they said the current department was beyond reform and will be replaced with a new public-safety system. "It shouldn’t have taken so much death to get us here," said Kandace Montgomery, who heads Black Vision. "We're safer without armed, unaccountable patrols supported by the state hunting black people." The move comes a day after protesters cried "Shame! Shame!" when the city's mayor, Jacob Frey, said he didn't favor "the full abolition of the police."

It also coincides with a grim Star-Tribune article on the city's Third Precinct, which headquarters the officers who killed George Floyd. Calling it a "playground for renegade cops," the paper looks at confirmed abuse incidents there—like officers kicking a handcuffed suspect until his jaw broke, pistol-whipping a low-level drug suspect, and letting prostitution suspects touch officers' genitals before arresting them. The city also paid out $2.1 million between 2007 and 2017 to settle lawsuits against the precinct. "We are going to dismantle the Minneapolis Police Department," tweets Jeremiah Ellison, a representative in the city's Ward 5. "And when we're done, we're not simply gonna glue it back together." (More police stories.)

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