Category Archives: Uncategorized

July report, part 2

COURTWATCH:  Nnamdi Okoronkwo, City Attorney, and Holly Ihrke, H.C. Probation Officer attended.   They confirmed that H.C. is trying to get people out of the tight quarters that is the HCJ and have moved people to Electronic Monitoring and other methods to keep people safe.  Some people have moved to tents in the parks, but those  sites have social workers on site regularly.   The courts are still charging cases, some 513 city cases in the last 30 days and more in Hennepin County.   At this point, the courts are figuring out how they’re going to handle this overload (and still keep people safe).  Thus, we still have no additions to the Courtwatch list, and there will be a problem  holding it down to 20 or 25 names when the cases finally start being processed. 

Updates:

  • Johnny Hall — amended sentence   07/08/20 to serve 30 days, credit 2 days, serve as EHM — i.e. Electronic Home Monitoring.  (last month: was discharged from probation 4/19, but charged with 5th degree drug poss. and DWI on 1/16/20 and  pretrial moved to 6/30/20.
  • Samuel Hasse  new charge on 6/13/20, for susp. burglary, 7/20/20 pretrial, in custody on $20K bail.  (last month: hearing sched. for 6/17/20 for trespass, disorderly conduct, 5th degree assault, 4th degree damage to property, and other complaints)
  • Joshua Poplawski was released from the workhouse on 10/30/19.  He had received multiple trespass citations from 11/7/19, mostly in the U of MN area and received a Trespass Violate citation on 2/4/20.  On 12/22/19 a business at 9XX Washington Ave. reported a new trespass; under Rule of 6 (probation violation) he was booked in HCJ; first appearance was 7/16/20.  8/12/20 pretrial for a 3/20 trespass. 10/23/20 arraignment for 2/20 trespass.  10/1/20 arraignment on a 2/20 trespass.

Awaiting a hearing:

  • Richard  Breen – May, 2020: Richard Breen is out of custody and waiting for a Pretrial, which has been scheduled to 9/30/20 (Restorative Court)
  • Kelli Durow (aka Tamera Hoveland) 39 city contacts since 2017, 38 in the Second Pct.  Habitual trespassing on or near U of MN.  “Rule 20 Return” for 8 charges. Further charge 4th degree assault.   Arraignment on 7/20/20 [SEE RULE 20 BELOW]
  • Daniel Heacock – 08/11/20 hearing for theft and check forgery in the 1st Precinct  – has been found incompetent in the past
  • Cody Horton has a review hearing 7/23/20 (MHC) triggered by a misdemeanor tamper M/V.
  • Christian Klockeman is a repeat trespasser around U of M and has a Felony threat of violence charge 11/11/19.  Hearing was rescheduled for 7/14/20 and now also has a 8/27/20 tracking hearing for treatment court triage.
  • Kirk Robledo is a frequent trespasser near the U of MN.  He was cited for  trespass on 10/2/19 and theft at Target Express in Dinkytown on 10/6/19. He will be in the workhouse until 9/2/20, but has 2 hearings on 10/6/20 (resched. from 6/23/20) for theft and trespass.

Rule 20:  Per www.MNCourts.govRule 20 evaluations occur in criminal cases when there is a belief that a defendant may not be competent to proceed with the case or was not responsible at the time of the alleged offense because of mental illness or developmental disability.  

No Updates:

  • Tanner DeWitt: Convicted of Felony receiving stolen property  8/18/19; convicted of receiving stolen property on 9/26/19.  Dept of Correction,  release 9/8/20, probation to 2/5/21.
  • Paula Heile remains on probation until 7/12/21. No further updates.
  • Miles Shaw was released from DOC on  4/27/20 and will be on parole to 9/25/20.
  • Leslie Wade received 3 trespass citations in the U of MN area; he has a pretrial on 6/9/20 after 2 hearings in Robbinsdale for Disorderly Conduct (5/14/20) and 4th degree damage to property (5/21/20)  Hearing was on 7/10 but his MNCIS has not yet been updated.
  • Michael Zaccardi has been released and will be on probation to 4/5/22.

PRECINCT CRIME ANALYSIS (from MPD maps)
Lt. Christie Nelson attended, reporting that Central Avenue is still Central Avenue.  The case she’s happiest to report on is the serial rapist, who was identified thanks to the brave women who came forward with enough information to identify the suspect.  

The Second Precinct has had some retirements.  Starting July 19, Lt Nelson will be leading both Mid-Watch and Dog-Watch.  

Asked about the Third Precinct staff, she reported that they are staffed and answering calls from temporary quarters at the Convention Center.  Plans are still being discussed for both mid and long term location. 

Crime in the first half of July remains chiefly property crimes, especially theft of bikes, theft from cars, and burglaries.   Few reported crimes are robbery of person,  but it’s happening.   Trusted advice suggests if confronted by someone who wants your stuff, it’s going to be more helpful to  give up the phone or backpack and focus on trying to spot an identifying characteristic.   I’ve heard an officer say (at 2-PAC) that shoes are better to concentrate on than clothing because people generally have more shirts to change into than shoes. 

Bike theft remains a Southeast-focus issue but it’s spread into near NE Minneapolis, through Ward 3.   Assault has been rising in both Wards 1 and 3, but is still low compared with the rest of the city.
We ended the meeting with speculation of how many resources are currently available to citizens and to the MPD.  We also touched on how policing may be forced to change in the future thanks to Covid-19’s impact on budgets, future economic issues, and other sources of impact — note the comment in Courtwatch above that the HCJ needed to have its population reduced to avoid increasing Covid-19 infections and is moving to electronic monitoring and other strategies. This could be a good  topic for a future discussion.


Emilie Quast, board member
MPD Second Precinct Advisory Council (2-PAC)
Minneapolis MN 55418
e-quas@tc.umn.edu

July Report, part 1

Biking from North to Northeast Minneapolis:  (and why you can’t do that yet)

The Grand Rounds trails will take you on a 51-mile trip to every part of our city using paved, maintained paths, many created for the bikeway, but… There’s never been a good connection for riders between North and Northeast Minneapolis to the Mississippi or to each other. That is changing. With a little bit of push, we’ll have the NorthEast segment completed in the near future. When that’s done, East-Siders will be able to ride from the Diagonal, past the Quarry, over the river to the stunning Greenway Overlook and then past sculpture gardens and art installations and on to Theodore Wirth Park–a total of 4.6 miles.  

At the July 2-PAC meeting (via Zoom), Eastsider Dan Miller, aka MplsBikerDan introduced the ALMOST completed Great Northern Greenway. The only other off-street shared trail across Northeast and North Minneapolis and northern half of the city is the Grand Rounds.  

From the Great Northern Greenway Facebook page

The 18th Avenue NE reconstruction between Johnson St. and Stinson Parkway moved into high gear this summer. The trail between Johnson to Stinson is still open as far as the Post Office. Completion is planned later this year with improvements along the trail and to the Johnson, Arthur and Stinson intersections. This is a highly used trail by pedestrians and bicyclists so please be thoughtful sharing the trail. This section of the Great Northern Greenway allows users to access the Diagonal Trail, Stinson Parkway, the Quarry Shopping Center, the 22nd Ave Bike Blvd and the Northeast Athletic Fields.

How the plans came about: 

The current bridges for bikes and pedestrians, the Lowry and the Broadway bridges, are over a mile apart, but a little used BNSF railroad bridge lies between the two. With the Great Northern Greenway Overlook scheduled to open soon on the west side of the river, residents need access from both sides of the river so we can all enjoy this stunning overlook.  The BNSF bridge currently carries freight about once a week to one west side business, a concrete layer.  It’s possible that this freight could be delivered to the Canadian Pacific/Soo rail line, which could free up the bridge for a pedestrian-bicycle crossing. 

The BNSF bridge used to carry a second rail line, but that was removed years ago.  That empty 14’ width is enough to allow both freight and bike paths to share the bridge as an alternative design. If that idea doesn’t get a go-ahead, there is a wide enough right-of-way to build a cantilever extension for bike paths. 

Amenities installed, ready, and proposed along 26th Ave North:

  • INSTALLED: Three sculpture installations are in place at Theodore Wirth Park, Nellie Stone Johnson, and Fairview Park (2018)
  • READY: The Great Northern Greenway Overlook, a signature project of the MPRB is scheduled to open this year.   This huge walk-on sculpture “overlooking” the river gorge is pictured & described here:  https://mplsparksfoundation.org/Initiative/26th-ave-n-trail-link-pier/
  • Nice Ride stations are located at Fairview Park and Theodore Wirth Parkway/26th Ave Intersection.
  • MISSING:  a link to the BNSF bridge (proposed between Ole Olson Park and the W River Road Trail)

Amenities installed, ready and proposed along 18th Ave NE: 

  • INSTALLED AND IN PROCESS: 18th Avenue NE shared trail is being improved   between Stinson and Johnson including intersection improvements at Johnson, to the Post Office entrance, at Arthur Street, and at Stinson.
  • Nice Ride stations located at 18th & Monroe, 22nd & California, and 22nd & Central.  
  • MISSING: There is a trail gap between Marshall and California scheduled for 2022 which will replace the 16th Avenue detour. This connects the trail to the East Bank Trail along the river, and to the future bridge crossing.  
  • MISSING, NOT SCHEDULED: There is a trail gap Washington between the Monroe & 18th Ave NE intersection. Two routes have been studied. One uses 18th Avenue NE between Washington and Jefferson to Monroe.  Another is a tunnel under the railroad tracks, which would create a direct connection. Some of the gaps are “challenging,” so some people call the 18th Avenue trek, the Trek to Nowhere.

The Great Northern Greenway Task Force has been pushing to finish the trail since 2017, continuing efforts started by the Mississippi Riverfront Partnership and many other volunteers and organizations over 20 years.   

The Great Northern Greenway Task Force has participated in NE Minneapolis Open Streets events, 2017-2019 (no Open Streets 2020 due to Covid-19). Members also participate in Discovery Rides organized by Slow Roll Minneapolis and Biking Northeast. 

Check their Facebook page, sign up for their newsletter, or ask the Task Force to send a speaker to your neighborhood meetings.

You’ll find up to date maps and very brief progress reports on the Facebook page:   https://www.facebook.com/northmplsgreenways/

The Minneapolis Parks Foundation reports and future plans with a lot of Overlook promotion is here:  https://mplsparksfoundation.org/Initiative/26th-ave-n-trail-link-pier/ and here: https://www.minneapolisparks.org/news/2019/06/18/great-northern-greenway-overlook-design-will-open-north-minneapolis-to-the-river-through-a-dynamic-new-riverfirst-park-feature/

Biker Dan is waiting to lead a Slow Roll bike trek to inspect and explore the 18th Avenue trail across Northeast Minneapolis. If you are interested, contact Biker Dan at mplsbikerdan@gmail.com or Emilie at e-quas@tc.umn.edu or sign up for more information at the Great Northern Greenway Task Force Facebook page. Biker Dan will be watching the Covid-19 statistics and the calendar and will start offering possible dates and will find out if his contact at Nice Ride can coordinate for the trek.  

If you want to see what’s going on but don’t want to bike for any reason, Dan will set up a trek so non-bikers can drive to pre-arranged meet up places to learn about the trail.

And, do be aware that scooters are also welcome on the bike paths. Perhaps there are enough people on scooters to have their own group–contact Dan, FFI.

EQ note:  I didn’t see this until after the meeting, but Hennepin County was awarded Gold Status by the League of American Bicyclists’ list of Bicycle Friendly Businesses.  Star Tribune, “The Drive” column by Tim Harlow, July 13, 2020, page A7, column 5 at the end.

June report, Part 1

We scheduled a speaker to highlight a Minneapolis recreation program this month.   It became clear, though, that  people are still processing the impact of the virus, the death of George Floyd, and the aftermath. We will be able to look ahead, hopefully soon, but people are not there yet.

If you’ve followed the 2-PAC programming over the last several years, you may have noticed a progression of information about  social and health resources available to all residents of Minneapolis or Hennepin County.   The programs in that series were deliberately chosen because it became apparent that too few people knew about them or knew how to approach the providers. 
I asked some of our previous presenters to list which of the many services available they’d offer to  those of us who are beginning to feel overwhelmed by confinement, by news reports, by illness in our city or in our family.
Here’s what they suggested:

  • Wellness in The Woods Warmline 5pm-9am 1-844-739-6369
  • Vets4Warriors Warmline 24/7 855-838-8255
  • Samaritan Hotline 24/7 212-673-3000 and 1-877-870-4673
  • MH Minnesota Warmline Available Monday-Saturday 5pm-10pm 651-288-0400 877-404-3190

People with special concerns, please check the following:

  • LGBTQ+ Crisis Line 24/7 1-866-488-7386
  • National Suicide Prevention Line 24/7 1-800-273-8255
  • Sexual Violence Center Crisis Line 24/7 612-871-5111
  • Day One Domestic Violence Crisis Line 24/7 1-866-223-1111
  • NAMI Parent Warmline (provide resources for family affected by mental illness) 651-645-2948 Parents.resources@namimn.org
  • Text for Life Text MN to 741741

If you or someone near you is having a crisis,  call COPE, 24 /7 at 612.596.1223.  The child crisis line is 612.348.2233.  If you’re not sure, call them and they’ll help you sort it out. 

If you are wondering how to handle everything  that’s going on, or just want to talk to someone who can help you understand your feelings, the folks in the groups listed above will protect your privacy and offer informed, compassionate suggestions.    Please call or email them.
2-PAC will be back in harness in July, likely on Zoom, celebrating one of the things that makes Minneapolis a wonderful place to live: our award winning bike trails.
While we’re on pause, think about joining a bike trek on one of the trails that won a “Best” award.  The treks will happen  (with appropriate health-protecting practices) before cold weather settles in, and as Covid-19 allows.  They’ll be led by people who know the trails — no guesswork for you.  Contact me for a tentative sign-up or to ask questions. e-quas@tc.umn.edu

June report, Part 2

Courtwatch Updades

Updates:

  • Joshua Poplawski was released from the workhouse on 10/30/19.  He had received multiple trespass citations from 11/7/19, mostly in the U of MN area and received a Trespass Violate citation on 2/4/20.  On 12/22/19 a business at 9XX Washington Ave. reported a new trespass; under Rule of 6 (probation violation) he was booked in HCJ; first appearance is 7/16/20 

Awaiting a hearing:

  • Richard  Breen – May, 2020: Richard Breen is out of custody and waiting for a Pretrial, scheduled for 6/17/20 (Restorative Court)
  • Kelli Durow (aka Tamera Hoveland) 39 city contacts since 2017, 38 in the Second Pct.  Habitual trespassing on or near U of MN.  “Rule 20 Return” for 8 charges. Further charge 4th degree assault.   Arraignment on 7/20/20 [SEE RULE 20 BELOW]
  • Samuel Haase  hearing now on 6/17/20 for trespass, disorderly conduct, 5th degree assault, 4th degree damage to property, and other complaints.
  • Johnny Hall was discharged from probation 4/19, but charged with 5th degree drug poss. and DWI on 1/16/20 and  pretrial moved to 6/30/20.
  • Daniel Heacock was recommitted on 2/4/20 and has a hearing on 8/11/20 re: check forgery
  • Cody Horton has a review hearing 6/18/20 (MHC) triggered by a misdemeanor tamper M/V.
  • Christian Klockeman is a repeat trespasser around U of M and has a Felony threat of violence charge 11/11/19.  He is now scheduled for 7/10//20.
  • Kirk Robledo is a frequent trespasser near the U of MN.  He was cited for  trespass on 10/2/19 and theft at Target Express in Dinkytown on 10/6/19. He will be in the workhouse until 9/2/20, but has 2 hearings on 6/23/20 for theft and trespass.
  • Leslie Wade received 3 trespass citations in the U of MN area; he has a pretrial on 6/9/20 after 2 hearings in Robbinsdale for Disorderly Conduct (5/14/20) and 4th degree damage to property (5/21/20)

Rule 20:  Per www.MNCourts.govRule 20 evaluations occur in criminal cases when there is a belief that a defendant may not be competent to proceed with the case or was not responsible at the time of the alleged offense because of mental illness or developmental disability.  

No Updates:

  • Tanner DeWitt: Convicted of Felony receiving stolen property  8/18/19; convicted of receiving stolen property on 9/26/19.  Dept of Correction,  release 9/8/20, probation to 2/5/21.
  • Paula Heile remains on probation until 7/12/21. No further updates.
  • Miles Shaw was released from DOC on  4/27/20 and will be on parole to 9/25/20.
  • Michael Zaccardi has been released and will be on probation to 4/5/22.

CURRENT CRIME TRENDS

Overall, crime in the 2nd precinct is down since May 15 in contrast with the early May report.  Marcy-Holmes is still seeing more crime than the rest of the Second Precinct, but while incidents still follow the main traffic pattern (University and Central heading north, East River Road and Prospect Park in the other directions) there are considerably fewer reported bike thefts.  In comparison, theft from auto, theft of auto parts (catalytic converters?), theft of autos, burglaries and robberies  are now prominent. 

I’m pleased to report that the interactive crime maps are now functioning for me.   See for yourself at   http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/police/statistics/index.htm

Emilie Quast, Board member 
MPD Second Precinct Advisory Council (2-PAC)
Minneapolis MN 55418
e-quas@tc.umn.edu

May Report, Part 2

COURTWATCH:    There were no proposed additions to the list from either Hennepin County Attorney’s office or Minneapolis Attorney’s Office.   Updates are noted below.  Apparently a number of hearings were pushed back a month. 

Updates:

  • Joshua Poplawski was released from the workhouse on 10/30/19.  He had received multiple trespass citations from 11/7/19, mostly in the U of MN area and received a Trespass Violate citation on 2/4/20.  On 12/22/19 a business at 9XX Washington Ave. reported a new trespass; under Rule of 6 (probation violation) he was booked in HCJ; first appearance is 6/9/20
  • Miles Shaw was released from DOC on  4/27/20 and will be on parole to 9/25/20.
  • Michael Zaccardi, convicted on 4/4/20 for 3rd degree assault; on probation until 4/5/22; convicted of trespass, given 45 days, stayed, and on probation until 1/31/21.

Awaiting a hearing:

  • Richard  Breen – May, 2020: Richard Breen is out of custody and waiting for a Pretrial, scheduled for 6/17/20 (Restorative Court)
  • Tanner DeWitt: Convicted of Felony receiving stolen property  8/18/19; convicted of receiving stolen property on 9/26/19.  Dept of Correction,  release 9/8/20, probation to 2/5/21.
  • Kelli Durow (aka Tamera Hoveland) 39 city contacts since 2017, 38 in the Second Pct.  Habitual trespassing on or near U of MN.  “Rule 20 Return” for 8 charges. Further charge 4th degree assault.   Arraignment on 7/20/20 [SEE RULE 20 BELOW]
  • Samuel Haase has a hearing now on 6/2/20 for trespass, disorderly conduct, 5th degree assault, 4th degree damage to property, and other complaints.
  • Johnny Hall was discharged from probation 4/19, but charged with 5th degree drug poss. and DWI on 1/16/20 and has a pretrial on 5/18/20.
  • Daniel Heacock was recommitted on 2/4/20 and has a hearing on 8/11/20re: check forgery
  • Cody Horton has a review hearing (MHC) triggered by a misdemeanor tamper M/V. Hearing is now scheduled for 5/21/20.
  • Christian Klockeman is a repeat trespasser around U of M and has a Felony threat of violence charge 11/11/19.  He is now scheduled for 6/23/20.
  • Kirk Robledo is a frequent trespasser near the U of MN.  He was cited for  trespass on 10/2/19 and theft at Target Express in Dinkytown on 10/6/19.  Hearing on 6/23/20.
  • Leslie Wade received 3 trespass citations in the U of MN area; he has a pretrial on 6/9/20 after 2 hearings in Robbinsdale for Disorderly Conduct (5/14/20) and 4th degree damage to property (5/21/20)

Rule 20:  Per www.MNCourts.govRule 20 evaluations occur in criminal cases when there is a belief that a defendant may not be competent to proceed with the case or was not responsible at the time of the alleged offense because of mental illness or developmental disability.  

No Updates:

  • Tanner DeWitt: Convicted of Felony receiving stolen property  8/18/19; convicted of receiving stolen property on 9/26/19.  Dept of Correction,  release 9/8/20, probation to 2/5/21.
  • Paula Heile remains on probation until 7/12/21. No further updates.

CURRENT CRIME TRENDS
Trends in the last 14 days remain unchanged.  Marcy-Holmes has the highest number of reported incidents in the Second Precinct and is the only bike theft hotspot.  

Additionally, Marcy-Holmes has the highest number of motor vehicle theft.  That includes theft from motor vehicles, theft of motor vehicle parts and theft of motor vehicles.    

University Avenue is apparently a corridor.  Crime is most concentrated in Marcy Holmes but follows University Avenue out of M-H and all the way out of the city.  The rate of incidents decreasing the further  you get from M-H and the further you get from University Avenue.
Prospect Park shares  M-V and bike theft incidents with Dinkytown, but has relatively more burglary as well.
We continue to see more charges against  Jory D. Wiebrand, the accused serial rapist who just been charged in a 10th case (Star Tribune, 5.13.20).   Thanks go to the people who identified him, brought him in, and are continuing to step forward in this case.   

May Report, part 1

Update and Planning Ahead

The Second Precinct Open House was cancelled this week, but we’re building plans for an exciting set of meetings, starting in June.
Did you know:  In 2019,  Minneapolis was ranked the top biking city in the U.S., for the second year running!!  Here’s how good we’ve got it:  the #2 city is Portland, Oregon — a warm weather town! [SEE ** BELOW]

Northeast resident Dan Miller (a.k.a. MplsBikerDan) has been leading bikers of every age to explore our city’s bike trails, and he’s been doing it for a long time.   I’ve spotted Dan leading a string of Pillsbury Elementary School kids down Como Avenue, leading a band of Edison High School kids across the U campus, and I’ve spotted him biking just about everywhere else I travel in town. 

On June 8, join our regular 2-PAC meeting.   We’ll be gathering remotely.   Dan Miller will present a ride briefing, covering the Great Northern Greenway and the 22nd Bike Blvd as avenues of discovery.  You’ll hear how Minneapolis earned it’s #1 ranking from someone who knows every part of our trails.
When people can safely share a group ride, Dan will lead a trek following the  Greenway and 22nd Bike Blvd.   We’re hoping to schedule that  later this summer when we find out what safe social distancing looks like then.  Contact me FFI

** https://www.cnbc.com/2019/12/12/the-10-most-bike-friendly-cities-in-the-us.html
Stay well, and we’ll see each other soon!


Emilie Quast, Board member
MPD Second Precinct Advisory Council (2-PAC)
Minneapolis MN 55418
e-quas@tc.umn.edu

April report, Part 1

April 13, 2020 2-PAC report, Part 1: Together-Separately edition

While the rest of us do our part in containing Covid-19 by staying at home, our first responders are still out there, working to keep us safe.  Law enforcement officers, medical providers, and mental health and family development services are busier than ever in times of stress.   Among the agencies on call helping  people manage stress is Cornerstone. 

Jenna Strank, Communications and Development Coordinator of Cornerstone offered the following summary of services.

Founded in 1983, Cornerstone’s ultimate goal is to reduce the prevalence of domestic violence, sexual violence, human trafficking and general crime. We believe that safe and stable futures are possible when we coordinate an effective crisis response, implement trauma-informed support services, mitigate the impact of violence on children and youth and confront the roots of violence. 

CORNERSTONE’S MISSION: Cornerstone’s continuum of service helps to create communities where individuals and families are safe and children thrive. We advocate, educate and lead the way to social change. 

In 2019, Cornerstone served 4,016 unduplicated individuals. An additional 30,001 calls, text, online chats and emails were placed to Cornerstone’s Day One® Call Center last year and over 12,000 students participated in presentations on unhealthy/healthy relationships, bullying, anger awareness and sexual harassment in school. 

CORNERSTONE offers a continuum of services:  

DAY ONE:  This statewide program is a crisis hotline that connects victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, human trafficking and general crime to emergency safe housing and resources from over 90 agencies throughout Minnesota via phone, text or online chat messaging. It is staffed around the clock, seven days a week.

Minnesota Day One® Crisis Line:

Call: 1-866-223-1111

Text: 612-399-9995

Email: safety@dayoneservices.org

Visit www.dayoneservices.org to chat online with an advocate.

STATEWIDE GENERAL CRIME VICTIM SUPPORT LINE is offered by Cornerstone through the Day One program.  Under Minnesota law, a crime victim is defined as a person who incurs loss or harm as a result of a crime. The support line is staffed around the clock, seven days a week, with advocates who can answer questions, provide support and offer referrals to necessary resources.

Minnesota Crime Victim Support Line:

Call: 1-866-385-2699

Text: 12-399-9977

Email: safety@dayoneservices.org

Visit www.dayoneservices.org to chat online with an advocate.

Emergency Services:

Cornerstone offers a seamless continuum of safe emergency shelter and supportive services designed to meet the needs of victims fleeing from violence. Once in shelter, comprehensive programming helps victims rebuild their lives and restore hope. In 2019, 121 adults and 121 children received 11,365 nights of safe housing and 34,095 meals.

Individual and Group Support for Adults:

Individual appointments can be made to speak confidentially with an advocate about your situation. In addition, a variety of educational and support groups are also available.

Economic Empowerment Services for Adults:

Advocates are available to assist survivors with addressing economic barriers resulting from violence: housing de-stabilization, job readiness, credit/debt issues, financial literacy and safety needs. Services also include transitional housing and access to matched savings accounts for cars, homes or continued education.

Criminal and Civil Justice Intervention Services for Adults:

Advocates work with police departments to provide services when an incident of interpersonal violence occurs and can assist in pursuing protective orders. Advocates provide court accompaniment, safety planning and referrals. Advocates are available for support throughout the court processes, working toward victim safety and offender accountability.

General Crime Victim Services for Adults:

General crime services provides a full range of advocacy and crisis intervention for victims, families and community members affected by crime and violence. Examples of general crime include burglary, identity theft, homicide, robbery, fraud, auto theft and bias/hate crimes.

General Crime Victim Services Line: (612) 767-9844

Clinical Therapy Services Adults, Youth and Families:

Our therapy team utilizes a trauma-informed approach and will listen and support survivors in processing traumatic events and provide healthy coping skills to assist with the healing journey. Therapists are available to help deal with a range of issues, including anxiety, depression or disrupted family functioning. Services are offered on a sliding fee scale.

Youth Advocacy:

Youth advocates are available to meet with children, youth and their families to learn more about how violence impacts their social, emotional, physical and behavioral health – and to develop strategies to heal from any past traumatic events.

Support Groups, Classes and Workshops for Children and Youth:

Cornerstone also provides prevention and advocacy for sexually exploited or at-risk youth – providing a safe place to share their stories, receive support and explore resources. Young people participate in diverse out-of-school time activities such as peer education groups, recreational activities and leadership opportunities designed to promote positive development.

School-based Services:

Educators are in more than 20 schools in suburban Hennepin County, speaking with thousands of students each year and offering classroom education and individual support on the topics of dating violence, bullying, cyber-bullying, unhealthy anger/aggression, sexting, harassment and sexual violence.

Parenting and Early Childhood Services:

Parents are provided with a safe space to discuss strategies on parenting children ages birth-17 who have been exposed to adverse childhood experiences. Staff provide creative approaches to setting appropriate boundaries, building relationships and understanding the developmental needs of their children. Specialized activities are also available for children ages 0-5.

Cornerstone Locations:

Main Office (Southern Hennepin County)

1000 East 80th Street | Bloomington, MN

Office: (952) 884-0376 | Office Fax: (952) 884-2135

24-Hour Crisis Line: (952) 884-0330

Northern Hennepin County

7051 Brooklyn Boulevard | Brooklyn Center, MN

Office: (952) 884-0376 | 24-Hour Crisis Line: (952) 884-0330

Minneapolis

2241 East 38th Street | 2249 East 38th Street | 1501 Xerxes Avenue North

Office: (952) 884-0376 | 24-Hour Crisis Line: (952) 884-0330

Jenna suggested that some people might want to view a video that highlights Cornerstone’s impact. 

April report, Part 2

COURTWATCH:    There were no proposed additions to the list from either Hennepin County Attorney’s office or Minneapolis Attorney’s Office.   Updates are noted below. 

Updates:

  • Tanner DeWitt: Convicted of Felony receiving stolen property  8/18/19; convicted of receiving stolen property on 9/26/19.  Dept of Correction,  release 9/8/20, probation to 2/5/21.
  • Miles Shaw remains in the DOC through 4/27/20 and will be on parole to 9/25/20.
  • Michael Zaccardi, convicted on 4/4/20 for 3rd degree assault; on probation until 4/5/22

Awaiting a hearing:

  • Richard  Breen – April 2019, cited for trespassing and placed in special hold as he was unable to care for himself.  Convicted and on probation until 9/20.  Cited for trespassing on 9/19, waiting for pretrial (Restorative Court) on 4/22/20. 
  • Kelli Durow (aka Tamera Hoveland) 39 city contacts since 2017, 38 in the Second Pct.  Habitual trespassing on or near U of MN.  “05/12/2020 Rule 20 Return and 05/26/2020 Arraignment/Tracking date” for 8 charges. Further charge 4th degree assault.   Hearing on competency 5/12/20
  • Samuel Haase has a hearing on 5/11/20 for trespass, disorderly conduct, 5th degree assault, 4th degree damage to property, and other complaints.
  • Johnny Hall was discharged from probation 4/19, but charged with 5th degree drug poss. and DWI on 1/16/20 and has a pretrial on 5/18/20.
  • Daniel Heacock was recommitted on 2/4/20 and has a competency hearing on 8/11/20
  • Cody Horton has a review hearing on 4/23/20.
  • Christian Klockeman is a repeat trespasser around U of M and has a Felony threat of violence charge 11/11/19.  He has a hearing on 5/22/20
  • Joshua Poplawski was released from the workhouse on 10/30/19.  He received multiple trespass citations from 11/7/19, mostly in the U of MN area and received a Trespass Violate citation on 2/4/20.  Arraignment is scheduled for 5/20/20 and pretrial on 5/27.
  • Kirk Robledo is a frequent trespasser near the U of MN.  He was cited for  trespass on 10/2/19 and theft on 10/6/19.  Hearing on 6/23/20.
  • Leslie Wade received 3 trespass citations in the U of MN area; he has a pretrial on 6/9/20 after 2 hearings in Robbinsdale for Disorderly Conduct (5/14/20) and 4th degree damage to property (5/21/20)

No Updates:

  • Paula Heile remains on probation until 7/12/21. No further updates.

March Report, Part 1

The meeting was called to order at 6:15,  17 attending

MPRB Police Chief Jason Ohotto joined us to present an updated overview of Park Police responsibilities in the changing environment that is Minneapolis.  He last spoke to 2-PAC in June,  2016.  A lot has changed since then. 

Chief Ohotto has been in the MPRB Police for the last 24 years, the last 7 years as Chief.  He’s worked mostly in south Minneapolis, but now he’s actually a Second Precinct resident, so he’s one of “us”.

Briefly, the Minneapolis Parks system includes 180 parks covering more than 6800 acres. They are serviced by 49 full-service recreation centers (“the crown jewels”) and 55 miles of parkway.  The MPRB recorded  26.3 million visits in 2018 and was the site of 2000 permitted special events, most happening Thursday through Sunday, April through October.  About 400 of those events require direct policing:  Twin Cities Marathon and Pride each pull over 300,000 people,  Aquatennial events are huge and all over town, July 4 is a multiple location event. This is in addition to uncounted visits to the playgrounds, wading pools, homework help services, ice rinks, soccer, baseball fields and so much more.  In 2020 MPRB had a budget of $126.2 million. 

Since 1887, the Parks have had their own police force, rather than relying on MPD and UMPD to cover the territory.  This is in part because the Park Board is independent of city governance, which is a leading factor in making our park system the winner that it is.  Nine elected Park Board members are elected separately from the City Council.  The Park Board has the charge and the authority to acquire, maintain and develop the parks.  This has resulted in the creation of one of the very best parks systems in the country.  [EQ:  for a statistical comparison of  Mpls., St. Paul, and  the rest of the country:  https://tinyurl.com/snxcogn]

For one example of how the Twin Cities handle their parks differently, in 2008 recession, St. Paul closed some recreation centers; some were later privatized and leased off to NPO’s to operate.   Mpls did reduce hours, but never closed the recreation centers.  For this and other reasons, Mpls neighbors know our parks are the hearts of our neighborhoods.   Neighbors trust that their kids will be safe there after school, on weekends and all summer long, for preschool programs, organized sports programs, pickup games, and more.  Cities, just like people, act to protect what’s important to them.  If people had to rely on the MPD for concerns about parks, those calls would be important, but would have to be prioritized with all the other calls the MPD gets.  The Parks police have one highest priority: safety in the parks; for the Parks Police, a park call has the highest priority.

MPRB Police staff is very lean.  34 sworn police officers include Chief Ohotto, 2 Lieutenants (Patrol and Investigation), 6 Patrol Sergeants and 2 Investigative Sergeants, and 23 Police Officers (divided into 2 shifts 7A – 4P and 4P to 1A; between 1AM and 7AM, MPD takes any emergency calls).  There is 1 Youth Violence Prevention Coordinator working to make sure the Parks youth violence programs are in step with MPD and similar programs.  MPRB PD includes 15-25 Park Patrol Agents, similar to community service agents.  Most are aspiring police officers, retired police officers, or law enforcement students.  Patrol Agents are in grey uniforms, have limited ordinance enforcement, and have the same arrest powers as any other citizen.

Service averages over years 2016-2018 and limited to sworn officers:

  • 9192 calls for service (85% park related, and 15% emergencies outside the park)
  • 4680  recreation center stops
  • 2367 offense or incident reports

Budget  is shrinking:  2020 budget is $6.4 million – about 5% of the MPRB total budget.  This is down from $6.6 million in 2019,  resulting in one officer position and some programs getting cut.

CRIME AND SAFETY ISSUES IN OUR PARKS:

Parks are generally safe places to be, and they are intentionally open spaces.  Parks draw people who are looking for peaceful, uncrowded natural surroundings.   Although parks comprise 18% of Minneapolis area, less than 2% of Part 1 violent crime occurs in the Parks.  Parks are also places where people can go if they have no other place to go.

Mental Health and Suicide –  Suicide has increased by over 50% in Minnesota over the last 20 years, rising from a complicated list of factors.  Also increasing is the number of non-fatal self-inflicted injuries that needed hospital-treatment.  While parks are not the dominant place of incidence, they are increasing there, as in other places.

Serious Aggravated Crime in the Parks –   Part 1 crimes (murder, aggravated assault, rape, robbery) — Chief Ohotto brought a chart summarizing Part 1 crime incidents in greater Minneapolis vs Minneapolis parks over 8 years.  [EQ:  contact me for a copy of  this chart]   Brief summary:  Minneapolis comprises 30565 acres not including parks @ 6811 acres.  The 8-year average of Part 1 crime in Greater Minneapolis =  4158 ~ 98%.  Parks = 88 crimes, just less than 2%  

Theft from motor vehicles is the most frequent report, and, like city-wide theft  from motor vehicles, is the most easily prevented if owners will just take their possessions with them.  Credit or debit cards stolen from the cars can be taken and used to the max before the owner gets back to the car and finds they are missing.  This is a very organized operation:  the crooks use spotters to avoid detection.  The spotter reports what he sees.  Then a second person comes up, breaks in and is on his way in under a minute. The credit cards may be used in half an hour — before you get back from your jogging, your meeting, or from picking up your child.   

Addiction and Substance Abuse:  Park police began carrying Narcan in late 2018, reporting 7 successful interventions since then.  2019 saw 1 OD death, but the number is probably higher because cause of death is often “undetermined”.

Homelessness:  As homelessness is on the rise across the country, our parks see more and more of this also.  According to the Wilder Foundation, in 2019, the Park Police documented 127 camps, usually involving single adults or couples.  Contributing factors include a lack of affordable housing and shelter beds, but also include mental illness, drug and alcohol  addiction, all of which are interconnected.

Chief Ohotto shared the frustration officers face when a call comes in because someone has passed out or is living in a park.  The cause is likely based in a mental health problem.  Mental health is not and should not be a primary policing function.   There is a failure in our community to provide the resources necessary  to combat the trends Chief Ohotto is describing.  Officers can not provide shelter.   They can’t provide the special medical care that people need to manage their condition.

This impacts the livability of our city.   You’ve seen the statistics that prove our parks are safe —  there are fewer than 100 serious violent crimes over a whole year, but he still hears from residents who are afraid to go to their neighborhood parks because they see people who are drunk, on drugs, having a mental health episode.  This has a direct impact on the livability of our city. 

QUESTIONS: 

RESPONSE TIME:   MPS EMTs, MFD, and Park Police share  911 communications, which is why 15% of Park calls for service are not in parks (Parks officers were closest to the incident 15% of the time).  If it’s a reported medical emergency, EMT or Fire personnel are likely to get there first.  Dealing with crisis response: Parks police are familiar with the Police Co-responder Program, and access that program through the local Precinct.

MISSION: There is also a difference in long term missions:  Park Police work closely with recreation staff with a goal of spotting issues while they are still amenable to redirection.  It’s important to understand that, in contrast to city services which provides police, fire and EMT response, the Park Police does not exist to provide general public safety services.  Everything we do is focused on parks and recreation programs and to support those services. 

COVERAGE:  Our park system has grown tremendously in the last 20 years.  We have begun adding more land every year and there are more people living in the city  (50,000 more people are now living downtown that weren’t  there before).  Add to that, we now have more programs and special events.  We’re now responsible for serving the Commons Park adjacent to the stadium.  We have more land in the southwest sectors.  The more we add to the park system, but don’t add to the public safety resources, the more our service levels are diluted.

Officers in squads used to be able to give pretty even coverage or our large parks area.  We can’t do that anymore.  The demands of downtown are so great that we have to push more of our effort to the downtown area.  The Eastside (2nd Precinct) has lost the most service time, because the  Eastside has the lowest number of calls from the parks.  We’re not getting resource levels to maintain service levels that we enjoyed in the past.   

PARK POLICE AND THE SCHOOLS:  We no longer supply school officers, but our officers know what’s going  on because the juveniles who need attention are in both the schools and in the parks.   Park Police funnel what they know into the MPD information chain so everyone has it.  The Parks Police division partners with colleagues in the Parks Recreation Division with an initiative called Straight Reach.  This program has trained  youth workers who collaborate with us on intervention strategies, behavior issues.  We bring  these Straight Reach workers to all our special programs. They are the first ones to contact when there is disruptive behavior or fighting.  We went from having issues at Pride, and July 4 on the River, to having no issues last year.  It’s an effective program. 

HOW DO YOU PLAN FOR BIG EVENTS?  Practice and stable administration:  it’s the same people planning the programs year to year and building on what they have learned.  We’ve hosted the Final Four, Super Bowls and other very big events; we’ve had a lot of practice.  Planning in Minneapolis also responds to events that happen elsewhere, like the Boston Marathon bombing.  We talk about it and plan to prevent it.

We do L.A. programs on an Omaha budget.  Think about it: the entire state of Minnesota has 10,000 to 10,500 officers.   The city of Chicago, alone, has 20,000 officers.    [EQ:  Efficiency!]

March Report, Part 2

The meeting was called to order at 6:15.  17 attenders

MPRB Police Chief Jason Ohotto, brought us up to date.  He last spoke at 2PAC in 2016.  His presentation is summarized in Part 1 of this report.

COURTWATCH:  Nnamdi Okoronkwo, Mpls City Attorney presented. 

  • Richard Breen –  On April 2, he was placed on a health and welfare hold as he is unable to care for himself; so far, he is doing OK and has a Restorative Court pretrial on April 22.
  • Tanner Dewitt is in custody  HCJ, review hearing scheduled March 25.
  • Kelli Durow (aka Tamera Hoveland) has 7 new trespass complaints at the U of MN, this year alone.  Her arraignment was scheduled for March 18.  A lot of her  charges get dismissed because she is unable to participate in her own defense
  • Samuel Haase is in HCJ.  He has a hearing on April 14,  felony trespass.
  • Johnny Hall was scheduled to be discharged from probation on  4.4.19.   He has a new (1.16.20) charge of 5th degree drug possession, pretrial is 4.21.20.
  • Daniel Heacock was recommitted on 2.4.20 and has a review hearing on 8.11.20
  • Paula Heille graduated from Chemical Treatment Court on March 9!
  • Cody Horton remains on probation through 11.19.21 and had a review hearing on 3.12.20
  • Christian Klockeman had a hearing on 2.10.20 for Veterans’ Court but failed to appear.  Active bench warrant.
  • Joshua Poplawski  has been deemed competent to participate in his defense and his cases are going ahead.  He is in Homes Court to obtain housing.
  • Kirk Robledo is back in custody in Washington County.
  • Miles Shaw is in custody of the Dept of Corrections – his release date is 4.27.20.
  • Leslie Wade has a pretrial on 4.2.20 for his third trespass on U of MN property.
  • Michael Zaccardi  remains on probation until 1.31.21 for misdemeanor trespass.
  • Spencer Hermes remains on probation until 5.23.22 but (per his parole officer)  is unlikely to reoffend and is dropped from our watch list.  His 5th degree drug possession was his only police contact in the city since 1995.

STATE OF THE PRECINCT:  Officer  Nelson reported that theft from cars is still rising.  This is  from parking on the street, or restaurant or similar parking lots.   When the criminals see “something”, like a bundle or a bag,  break into the car and take it.  Clothes or a laptop, they will take it and find out what they’ve got later. 

Another issue is rising theft of catalytic converters.   If you hear a saw sound late at night, call immediately.  Rashid received a couple of calls that people had heard a saw sound late at night and didn’t know what to do about it.  The answer is call 911 immediately!  This theft can be a one or two person team:  they know what they are doing and they are very quick. QUESTION:  don’t the metal recycling people notice and report this?  ANSWER: it’s about the same deal as pawn shops.

Attempted abductions in the Marcy Holmes neighborhood.   There have been three incidents;  the victims have worked with sketch artists and seem to be similar features on all three sketches.  Officer Nelson assured us we have a senior  detective working on this and he is very good.  The Second Precinct is in the information pipeline.  There are extra patrols in the area for this and for the catalytic converters.  [EQ : the sketches appeared in the Star Tribune on March 13.  Check here:  https://tinyurl.com/r3dbtfs

Reminder:  OPEN HOUSE AT THE PRECINCT Monday May 11, 4-7PM.  Food off the grill, sides, beverage and dessert with sit down eating, Patrol Horses, K-9s, Bike Cops for Kids with drawing for give-away  bikes, the mobile command center and a lot more.  It’s rain or shine, and they have canopy shelter if it rains.     Join us!

Emilie Quast, Board member