Just when you thought it can’t get worse…

This kind of situation Minneapolis police are facing is similar to what many city police departments are facing across our land.

In short, what is needed is a PLAN developed in conjunction with police, elected officials and community leaders; a plan developed with community input, is visible and understood, and a plan in which most of the community has an interest and a “buy-in.”

Citizens must know the plan is important to them and what it contains. Then the community needs to stand with the police and be able to monitor the progress and help the police. That’s the way forward.

The 3rd Police Precinct is where the death of George Floyd occurred on May 25th. This resulted in fires and looting in the area. The City Council first voted to eliminate, not just de-fund the police department and start anew. It seems now that elimination is off the table.

The trial of the officers involved in Floyd’s death will soon begin along with the possibility that a number of citizens will not agree with the verdict.

A contentious national election in scheduled in November.

The crisis continues as the police commander in the 3rd Precinct noted to a local business owner:

— 30% reduction in street officers since May.

— Over $1 million in budget cuts.

— 17 Community Service Officers (CSOs) furloughed.

— Current recruit and cadet classes cancelled.

— A spike in shootings and homicides.

Here’s a recent article from a local news station:

“Reinforcements Aren’t Coming Any Time Soon…”

Syndicated Local – WCCO | CBS Minnesota, Sept. 18, 2020

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — “There’s no long-term plan, and reinforcements aren’t coming anytime soon.

“That’s what the head of the Minneapolis Police Department’s 3rd Precinct said in an email to a business owner who shared that his employees are scared to go to work.

“The neighborhood block of shops near East 48th Street and Chicago Avenue has felt the impact of recent crime…

“Surveillance video shows a group accused of robbing Chad Stamps’ wife inside her gift shop, 14 Hill, during the lunch hour earlier this month.

“’So they stole our car, stole our wallet, checkbook, everything’…

“’I’m scared for my coworkers, but it’s worrisome to see people that I care about just kind of in a dangerous area,’ Hrubesky said.

“A nearby business relayed a similar message to the inspector of the 3rd Precinct via email. They also sharing it’s hard to find employees who want to work in the area, and they are asking for a long-term plan.

“Here is the response they received from Inspector Sean McGinty:

As far as a long-term plan I don’t have one. I have lost 30% of my street officers since the end of May. Budget cuts from COVID-19 and an additional 1.5 million from the council in August we have let go 17 CSO’s and cancelled a recruit class of 29. A potential Cadet class slated for January of 2021 was also eliminated. I takes about a year to get a police Officer onto the streets with hiring, backgrounds and field training so reinforcements aren’t coming anytime soon. We are doing everything we can with what we have. I hate to see great businesses like yours and the rest of your corridor being victimized and feeling unsafe. Please let me know if you have any more questions.

“’It does erode the confidence in the neighborhood of the people and being able to feel safe coming down here,’ Stamps said….

“Lt. Bob Kroll, president of the Minneapolis Police Officers Federation, gave WCCO this statement:

The Inspector gave an excellent summary. I think the only plan city leadership has is to further decimate its police department. Businesses and people will continue to flee the city. And rightfully so.

“Minneapolis City Councilmember Jeremy Schroeder, whose ward covers part of the third precinct, said this:

The Minneapolis Police Department currently has a budget of more than $180,000,000. Chief Arradondo reassured the City Council and the public this week that MPD is fully staffed in terms of patrols. The inspector’s stated lack of a plan is frustrating given the severity of safety concerns and the fact that MPD today has one of the largest budgets of any City department.

“The inspector’s email came just a day after the chief assured city council members there were enough patrol officers to respond.

“Minneapolis Police told WCCO, ‘In these very challenging times of COVID, budget cuts and retirements, the MPD continues to evaluate and reallocate the resources that we currently have to best serve the City of Minneapolis, focusing on the core responsibilities of a police department; responding to 911 calls and investigations.” — CBS Minnesota, September 18, 2020.

Read the full article HERE.

And here’s what I mean about a PLAN.

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