Minneapolis Councilman Proposes Changing City Charter to Allow More Oversight of Police

June 27, 2018 10:17 PM

Some Minneapolis City Council members say they want the power to change police department policies.

Right now, only the mayor can do so.


Council member Cam Gordon proposes that Police Chief Medaria Arradondo also report to the 13 council members, instead of only to Mayor Jacob Frey. Gordon tells 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS this isn't only in response to the latest officer-involved shooting.

RELATED: In Wake of Officer-Involved Shooting, Family Members, Public Address City Council

"There's been issues with the way police operate, police community relations, a lot of things like that and every time an issue like that comes up council members hear back from their constituents, 'What are you doing about this, why can't you set some kind of policy in place,'" said Gordon.
Right now, there are two ways to amend the city charter. One is by passing an ordinance from the full council and mayor. The other is to put it on the ballot for voters to decide, and that's what Gordon is calling for with this idea.

CONTINUING COVERAGE: North Minneapolis Officer-Involved Shooting

Frey does not support this idea, saying:

"The magnitude and significance of the proposal – which would fundamentally reshape our form of governance – requires a serious, thoughtful discussion. My office was not made aware of the proposal by the council Member bringing it forward until only minutes before the proposal was publicly discussed. Chief Arradondo was never consulted. As a Council Member, I opposed this Charter amendment. That hasn't changed. Effectively responding to the demands of policing requires an ability to receive clear – and at times quick – direction. That direction would be practically impossible with 14 cooks in the kitchen."

Gordon said he's not worried about having too many voices.

"Of course there'd be decisions and calls that the chief would have to make on the spot and others, so I think we can be nimble enough," Gordon said. 

RELATED: Minneapolis City Council Members Call For Completion of Investigation Into Sedation Cases

Other council members expressed support for this on Wednesday including Council President Lisa Bender who says she's open to having a discussion on the pros and cons.

Gordon tells 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS if they want to consider this for the November ballot they have to act quickly, and he plans more formal action by Friday. 


Brett Hoffland

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