The meeting was called to order at 6:39. 12 people attending.
Lt Nelson started her catch-up report but was having computer connection problems so CPS Rashid Ali stepped in to share some very important news.
Redesigned 911/311 protocols have been announced twice before but changes are still being reworked. The latest procedure retains 911 as the place to call for persons in danger or crime in progress. The new streamlined protocol sends suspicious activity reports (from 311 calls) directly to the Precinct Crime Prevention Specialist for analysis to redirect the calls.
CPS Ali pointed out that CPS staff know their precincts. They know which are the trouble houses, which people have issues that don’t require an officer, which residents have local family or friends for support. CPS staff will contact the people involved and find out what’s going on. Essentially, directing 311 calls to CPSs, the people who literally know the territory, should go a long way in improved efficiency and effective response. This redirection will take a load off the officers who should not be responding to those calls
Someone asked what “CPS” means. That is Crime Prevention Specialist, a unit that is part of Minneapolis Neighborhood & Community Relations. FFI: see https://www2.minneapolismn.gov/government/departments/ncr/
Welcome Back and Congratulations Lt. Christie Nelson!
Lt. Nelson is back after spending 10 weeks at Quantico, completing an executive leadership course sponsored by the FBI and the University of Virginia. Her Master’s Certificate was issued through UVA. We’re happy to see her back in the Second Precinct.
She’s been bringing herself up to date with MPD issues, balancing staffing needs with officers’ need for time off. She just had her first meeting with our new MPD Chief, Brian O’Hara. It’s encouraging that he was voted in by the entire City Council.
STATE OF THE PRECINCT:
Data from the MPD Crime Dashboard: comparing the numbers 2022 against 2021
|Charge 2022 2021|
Assault 81 75
Incl.Dom.Ag.Asslt 9 10
Burglary, B&E **
Destr. Of property 79 50
Homicide 0 0
MV theft 88 63
Robbery 24 25
Incl Carjacking 9 4
Sex offenses 5 11
Stolen property 2 7
Weapons violations 11 9
Shots fired calls 28 36
Gunshot wound vics 0 1
|** Likely an error. Two weeks later, the report read 13 and 36, and the 3-year average was 40.||Somebody’s doing something right.|
Before this meeting, Emilie put out a call to 2nd Pct residents for topics for future meetings or issues of concern. The list was short, but very pertinent! Lt. Nelson first took the ones that were clearly policing matters.
Proposed topics for future PAC meetings and issues of concern in the Second.
QQ What’s happening about street racing, doing doughnuts, and similar:
Nelson: Winter weather puts an end to most of this. The concrete barriers that had been put out to halt street racing (primarily on Main Street) were taken in on November 1. In other locations, street maintenance discovered that steel plates (usually put down when a hole has been dug under the street) prevent cars from driving doughnuts. The steel plates will probably be returning next summer.
The light cameras are coming down now; they don’t operate well in our winters. Sturdier versions will go up next spring.
QQ A rep from the Logan Park N’hood Assn. and others in the precinct have sent in questions about 2nd Precinct crime statistics. What kinds of crimes happen in their immediate area and what can neighbors do about it.
Emilie suggested that we could use a brief presentation on navigating the MPD Crime and Crime Maps Dashboard. The Maps feature locates a crime report down to the street address, which is very informative. If we had a stand alone video, everyone would be able to share that. Rashid pointed to his use of Raids Online. Discussion pointed to Emilie and Rashid doing a joint 20-minute presentation.
Also, Rashid offers presentations on crime control strategies at community meetings. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 612-673-2874
QQ about DEW [Directed Energy Weapons i.e. tasers and similar]. Is there any legislation addressing the use of this technology?
The Police Officers Standards Training Board [POST Board] sets the guidelines. Local criminal courts determine what officers can or can’t carry. If, however, the City Attorney’s Office has an idea they want codified at the state level, they’ll propose it through the channels to the legislature that this idea should become a resolution. State representatives are the ones to start the process at the state level. Again: legislators need input from citizens to know what we want. A state level code would top a city mandate or guideline.
To the basic question, EQ asks: Once a state level order is enacted, who writes the local policy for the local force? Who teaches the policies? Who determines if the policies are being followed? What is “reasonable cause”?
QQ How does Bail work?
Bail is a pretrial restriction to ensure a suspect will return to court for trial; it’s a conditional release. Certain charges come with a suggested bail range, but the judge decides how much to set. If a person returns on their court date, the bail is refunded. If they do not return, the bail is forfeited. [EQ: when Covid hit, the Sheriff’s offices were urged to empty the jails as much as they could safely do. The close quarters that most jails offer are ripe for disease spread; people who pick up a bug in jail and then leave can infect others on the outside. See Paragraph 2: https://www.mncourts.gov/mncourtsgov/media/fourth_district/documents/Criminal/HCDCPretrialDetentionReduction.pdf ]
Atty Okoronkwo pointed out that bail was intended to be a bond set by the accused or family. People who don’t have the means to put up their own bail can take out a bond from a certified Bond Broker. MN Law allows third parties (like Brokers) to post bail for a person. [See https://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/hrd/pubs/ss/ssbailmn.pdf ] This has been used by organizations like the MN Freedom Fund. [See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minnesota_Freedom_Fund for a fairly even-handed explanation of the organization.]
QQ Juvenile justice: What resources does Hennepin County have access to for juveniles committing serious crimes? What does our state need to do to provide more treatment options for juveniles?
EQ: In April of 2021, Judge Mark Kappelhoff of the 4th Judicial District, gave an extensive report on the new Youth Justice Council — a multi-agency coordinated program directed at “Keeping Kids On Track and Out Of Trouble”. The report is detailed and represents a lot of thoughtful planning. Read it here: https://courtwatch2pac.com/2021/05/04/april-report-part-1-keeping-kids-on-track-and-out-of-trouble/
Since then we’ve had pandemic lockdown and many more impacting events. 19 months later, it will be interesting to hear/read a report on how it worked out for the courts and for the kids. I’ll ask Judge Kappelhoff about that.
Drive by shootings in NE A resident is very concerned about two drive-by shootings at a house on 15th and Adams NE.
Rashid and Lt. Nelson responded: That is the problem property that was discussed at the Logan Park Community meeting, attended by Inspector McGinty, Lt. Nelson and CPS Ali and CCM Payne. At that meeting, they outlined how this kind of problem is handled by the Precinct. That is a property managed by the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority, which is good! The MPHA is known for responding promptly and they are aware of the incidents. CPS Ali is in contact with the security person for that property. Contact CPS Ali at email@example.com or 612-673-2874
Encampments in Minneapolis: Per the Star Tribune, Minneapolis policy and procedures don’t look good. How did St. Paul get a better procedure than we have and when are we going to catch up? see https://www.startribune.com/in-minneapolis-and-st-paul-two-homeless-encampment-strategies/600222337/ Winter’s here. Minneapolis is not offering a good way to handle encampments.
Holly and Christie offered to do a presentation on this topic for December.
QQ E-mail security: A resident came in with a new question about security for a new email account. CPS Ali suggested first checking all your financial links to make sure they have not been attacked. If you find evidence that something isn’t right, contact that account’s “Help” or “Contact Us” desk and share the issue with them, since they can see what’s going on from their desk.
Also, consider sitting down with a banker at your bank or credit union and setting up a 2-step verification. That means that if you or anyone else wants to get into your account [and you have not authorized auto pay for that place], the account is closed unless you or the other party can receive a security code sent to your phone. This isn’t something the MPD teaches, but it is something officers and others do for themselves with the help of their banks and contact assistance people with credit card companies.
QQ Neighborhood security Earlier in the meeting, Lt. Nelson spoke on the importance of residents communicating with the Precinct. Officers can’t be everywhere or see everything that ‘s going on. They rely on residents to keep information coming in. This is in line with another idea for increasing neighborhood security: Emilie reminded the group that quite a few years ago, you could spot “See something / Say something” or “I watch and I call” or McGruff House signs all over neighborhoods. Additionally, some 15 years ago, the MPD had a block club drive, getting block clubs organized across the city — it was very successful. The person who was the driving force behind much of that retired this summer, although block club leader training is still available.
I did some looking at related topics and discovered that the neighborhood watch is still a national level initiative. See https://www.nnw.org/ — this is the National Neighborhood Watch, a division of the National Sheriffs’ Association. I hope this is something we can start talking through in December and see if any kind of support is available after Sheriff-elect Witt takes her office.
Do I think we’ll get a big deal rolling? I don’t know. I do know that we don’t like the lack of organization we’ve got in many parts of the precinct now. I also know that if we don’t do anything, what we’ve got is what we’re going to keep getting. Let’s see what happens.
This can NOT be part of 2-PAC.
Final word from Lt. Nelson:
The weather is getting cold.
Don’t start your car to warm it and go back into the house.
It’s terrible getting into a cold car.
It’s worse to have no car to get into.
Emilie Quast, Board member
MPD Second Precinct Advisory Council (2-PAC)
1911 Central Ave NE
Minneapolis MN 55418