Assaults on Minnesota law enforcement officers up over 140% in 2 years

Rise in violence against police officers


In the past week, one Minnesota law enforcement officer has been shot and killed and three others have been injured by gunfire.

According to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) Uniform Crime Report, there were 467 officers assaulted statewide in 2019. Those numbers, from the BCA crime report, jumped to 1,112 in 2021, which is a 140% increase over the three-year time frame.

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Former St. Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell now runs a private security consulting company called The Axtell Group. He told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS the violent trend toward officers is troubling.

“Officers are viewed as people who are really open game, in some circumstances, and it’s disgusting and disturbing to see,” Axtell said.

And, Axtell said, with a significant increase in violent crime in society, he isn’t surprised to see more assaults on law enforcement.

“Violent crime increases do go hand-in-hand with assaults on police officers,” Axtell said. “Between 2019 and 2021, we had a 140% increase on assaults against police officers. That’s disturbing.”

Each of the Minnesota officers injured or killed by gunfire this week were serving either a search warrant or responding to a domestic disturbance, which Axtell said are among the most dangerous calls to which an officer responds.

“There are the top three most dangerous policing calls in America. Ambush, traffic stops and domestic assault calls,” Axtell said.