After voting to disband the Minneapolis Police Department and replace it with community-based, alternative forms of policing earlier this summer, the city council is now demanding that the police increase their presence in the city as crime continues to rise.
During a two-hour meeting with Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo last week, the Democratic city council demanded to know why city police are not responding to the uptick in crime that Minneapolis has experienced in recent months, according to Minnesota Public Radio.
“Residents are asking, ‘Where are the police?'” Councilman Jamal Osman said, according to the outlet.
“That is the only public safety option they have at the moment: MPD,” he continued. “They rely on MPD. And they are saying they are nowhere to be seen.”
Council President Lisa Bender, who was one of the loudest ‘Defund the Police’ advocates, accused police of being “defiant.”
“This is not new,” she claimed. “But it is very concerning in the current context.”
The number of reported violent crimes—including assaults, robberies and homicides—are up compared to last year, according to MPD’s crime data.
In fact, more people have been killed in the city so far this year than were slain in all of 2019.
One of them, 17-year-old campaign volunteer Andre Conley, was killed Monday in a shooting outside a gas station.
Andre Conley, 17 Year Old Republican volunteer for Lacy Johnson (who’s running against Ilhan Omar) was shot and killed in Minneapolis.https://t.co/jYPYeZYuel
— Kyle Kashuv (@KyleKashuv) September 17, 2020
Property crimes, too, like burglaries and auto thefts, are up. And incidents of arson have increased 55% compared to this time last year.
Council member Phillipe Cunningham blasted his colleagues for looking to the police for solutions when they called for the department’s abolition just a few months ago.
“What I am sort of flabbergasted by right now is colleagues, who a very short time ago were calling for abolition, are now suggesting we should be putting more resources and funding into MPD,” Cunningham said during the meeting.
The Minneapolis City Council’s resolution to disband the police department, which passed in June, fell apart later this summer after Democrats realized that it wouldn’t make for good policy.
“I think when you take a statement and then move into policy work, it gets more complicated,” Bender told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.