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Audit finds issues with Minneapolis Police Department's off-duty work policy

Updated: September 11, 2019 08:07 PM

The Minneapolis Police Department is promising changes after an audit of officers' off-duty work found a lack of oversight and monitoring.

The audit, published Wednesday, found the department has no formal way to track which officers are taking on part-time work. The department also could not provide data to the auditor about how often officers are working off-duty.

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"We don't have good data," said Minneapolis City Council member Linea Palmisano. "We found that out through this audit. We wouldn't have known that before."

Palmisano is chairperson of the city's Audit Committee. She initially called for the audit last spring, over concerns of overworked police officers.

The audit also points to policies that lack teeth. Officers are not allowed to work more than 64 hours per week. But, the department acknowledged Wednesday it has no formal technology to track off-duty hours.

Police off-duty work audit

"It is very troubling to see some of these very serious issues," said City Council member Jeremy Schroeder, who sits on the Audit Committee. "The biggest thing I hear about in my area is that our tax dollars are used wisely."

While the money police officers are earning during off-duty work comes from private businesses, officers typically wear their MPD uniform and even take a marked squad car along.

Police Chief Medaria Arradondo addressed the committee, acknowledged the department's shortcomings and promised to work toward solutions to better track officer off-duty hours.

"Off-duty work has certainly been a part of the MPD culture for many decades," Arradondo said. "It ultimately does impact our residents here in the city, and it also impacts our workforce."

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Kirsten Swanson

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