Minneapolis Mayoral Candidates Take On Downtown Crime

September 14, 2017 07:24 PM

Downtown crime, the $15 minimum wage and whether the city should make a bid for the new Amazon headquarters were all topics discussed by six of the candidates vying for Minneapolis mayor.

The discussion occurred Thursday afternoon during a mayoral candidate forum.


Downtown crime created some of the most vigorous debate following a summer during which 18 people were wounded in violence, with one fatality in a parking ramp.

Incumbent Mayor Betsy Hodges says she addressed downtown crime in her recent budget, with money targeted at night time police patrols downtown.

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"The budget I delivered on Tuesday has $900,000 dollars in it for downtown safety, including $623,000 dollars to fund what was a pilot program to manage our late nights downtown," Hodges said.

But opponent, Minneapolis Council Member Jacob Frey, said the mayor's budget doesn't include money for many new officers in the short-term.

Another candidate, Minnesota State Rep. Ray Dehn, was asked about his controversial statement that some Minneapolis officers shouldn't carry guns.

RELATED: FULL DEBATE: Minneapolis Mayoral Candidates Face Off at Humphrey School

"You don't always have to have a gun to respond to force," Dehn said. "We know in other parts of the world, in other cities in the United States, officers are more likely to respond by de-escalating the situation instead of escalating the situation."

Other candidates in the debate included Nekima Levy-Pounds, Tom Hoch and Answar Rahman who all said more needs to be done to address violent crime downtown.

You can hear more from all of the candidates Sunday morning on At Issue at 10 a.m.

The debate was sponsored by the Downtown Council, Minneapolis Regional Chamber, Meet Minneapolis, BOMA of Greater Minneapolis and the Greater Minneapolis Hotel Association.


Tom Hauser

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