Minneapolis Police Department
|Minneapolis Police Department|
|Patch of the Minneapolis Police Department.|
|Badge of the Minneapolis Police Department.|
|Motto||To Protect with Courage, To Serve with Compassion|
|Preceding agency||Municipal Police|
|Legal personality||Governmental: Government agency|
|Operations jurisdiction*||City of Minneapolis in the state of Minnesota, USA|
|Map of Minneapolis Police Department's jurisdiction.|
|Size||58.4 square miles (151 km2)|
|Governing body||Minneapolis City Council|
|Overviewed by Civilian Board||Minneapolis Civilian Police Review Authority Board|
|Headquarters||Downtown Minneapolis City Hall|
|* Divisional agency: Division of the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.|
The Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) is the police department for the city of Minneapolis in the U.S. state of Minnesota. Formed in 1867, it is the second oldest police department in the state of Minnesota, after the Saint Paul Police Department (formed in 1854). A short-lived Board of Police Commissioners existed from 1887 to 1890. The modern department is organized into three bureaus all reporting to Chief of Police Janeé Harteau.
The city is served through five precincts  with 800 sworn officers and 300 civilian employees. At the city's population peak, MPD served over 521,000 people, and today serves over 382,000 people as of the last Census estimate.
Other independent protection organizations serve the city, identified as partner law enforcement agencies, these are the University of Minnesota Police Department (UMPD), Minneapolis Park Police, Metro Transit Police, and the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office. The Metropolitan Airports Commission Police serves the Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport in unincorporated Hennepin County.
- 1 History
- 2 Organization
- 3 Volunteer units and activities
- 4 Rank structure
- 5 In Television
- 6 Other agencies
- 7 See also
- 8 Notes
- 9 External links
In the 19th century, the City of St. Anthony and Town of Minneapolis were first adequately served by an appointed city marshal based out of St. Anthony who was assisted by constables. Vested with the power of arrest, they rarely used it. Criminals sentenced would be sent to Ramsey County Jail or the Stillwater Penitentiary until the Hennepin County Courthouse and Jail was built in 1857. When the two cities merged and incorporated as Minneapolis in 1867, Mayor Dorilus Morrison immediately appointed H. H. Brackett as the first police chief. With six patrolmen, the new Police Department of Minneapolis served a population of about 5,000 people. In 1884, the force numbered 100 men and Shingle Creek workhouse was completed.
In 1887, by act of the new Minnesota Legislature and accorded by the Minneapolis City Council, the Board of Police Commissioners was appointed. Vesting all control of the force to the Board, it was an attempt to thwart the corrupt Mayor "Doc" Ames who had replaced the police force with crooks. The Board was short-lived for three terms until it was abolished in 1890 and a new mayor was elected. Military titles were also abolished. By then the city grew to 200,000 people with 200 officers on a budget of $209,278. Patrols were done on foot and by horseback with headquarters at city hall. By 1909, the department added motorcycles, fingerprinting, and utilized telephones.
Mobs and fear
In the 1920s, criminal activity had grown to an alarming level. Saint Paul's Chief of Police, John J. O'Connor, established the O'Connor System which allowed gang-land criminals to live in the city as long as they committed no crimes there. In exchange, police provided protection and tips regarding impending federal raids and helped keep criminals free by refusing to extradite them elsewhere. As a result, high-profile criminals such as Machine Gun Kelly, John Dillinger and Baby Face Nelson took refuge in St. Paul and committed crimes across the region, including Minneapolis. These criminals then fled to St. Paul, where they were all but untouchable. Soon, the corruption spread to the Minneapolis Police Department, who instituted their own similar system. An Irishman named Edward G. "Big Ed" Morgan operated a gambling den under police protection but also commanded crime in partnership with Prohibition bootleggers. Then, Danny Hogan, an underworld "Godfather" of Saint Paul allied with Morgan.
The police of Minneapolis and St. Paul are said not to interfere with these criminals, there being an understanding between Dan Hogan and the St. Paul Police and Edward Morgan and the Minneapolis Police that if the criminal gangs controlled by them refrain from committing crime in the Twin Cities, that they will not be disturbed. It is a well known fact in the community that a very little crime such as bank robberies, etc, is committed here, the criminals are safe as long as they live up to the pledge made by Dan Hogan and Edward Morgan to the local police.|1926 FBI Memo|
Minneapolis also raided and investigated its own Chinese population of the Chinese Exclusion Act era. In 1925, Chief Frank Brunskill instructed captains to "investigate every Chinese on his beat" for naturalization papers or other identification. These round-ups were a response to Minneapolis events of the Tong wars killings between the local Hip Sing Tong and On Leong Tong. The raids and arrests were ineffective and no Chinese were deported. The tensions faded with the gradual assimilation of the city's small Chinese population and repeal of exclusion laws.
The Great Depression and the 1930s followed similarly to other growing U.S. cities as the department quelled labor disputes and continued to fight gangsters during the waning years of Prohibition. On December 16, 1932, members of the infamous Barker-Karpis gang robbed the Third Northwestern Bank in downtown Northeast, Minneapolis and killed responding policemen Ira Leon Evans and Leo Gorski. The sensational manner in which the gang blasted their way out led to an intense manhunt that netted some of the culprits but not the leaders who had fled. In a sign of the Great Depression, the city controller's office revealed that the two patrolmen had been working without pay due to a shortage in the police fund. Mayor Anderson blamed "large taxpayers" as not paying their fair share of taxes, shortening the police budget and limiting the department's ability to fund and equip officers.
Labor strikes and domestic changes
The Minneapolis Teamsters Strike of 1934 was set in May 1934 in the city market (North Loop, Minneapolis) when a new truckers union was not recognized. MPD attempted to open the markets, which were the source of most goods and produce in the city but were blocked by teamsters. Assisted by the Minnesota National Guard and a local militia, the two sides clashed violently for a month with police using gas bombs and brandishing rifles. It ended on August 21 when the union was recognized. Though 200 were injured and four were killed, the strike was a significant event in state and national labor history.
During World War II, 117 MPD officers were sent to Europe. At home, the stress of the war and fear of attack developed into air raid drills where two wardens were assigned to each city block. Following the war, the program was chartered by the city as the Police Reserve under MPD's Civil Defense unit in 1952. The Reserve bolsters MPD presence at major events to this day.
With American prosperity, Minneapolis reached its peak population of over 521,000 in the 1950 Census and MPD had nearly 600 sworn officers. The demographics of Minneapolis also identified in the 1950 census as 98% white. While national politics and anti-communism sentiment played out during this decade, urban renewal ravaged the downtown areas and cleared slums, impacting poor communities. Police contended with protests to this clearance and freeway and expressway revolts later in the 1960s.
Counterculture and riots
The 1960s posed new challenges to the department from increased drug use, counterculture, and societal unrest. Rioting in Minneapolis followed similarly to inequality riots across many major U.S. cities during that era in predominantly African-American communities. Most notably, the Plymouth Avenue Riots in the Near North neighborhood, instigated by East Coast protesters, effectively emptied the area of Jewish and German businesses. The Police Department's poor engagement with the riots resulted in the Community Relations Division and the Model Cities Precinct in 1970. The Minneapolis Domestic Violence Experiment was conducted in 1981 and the study's prolific release led to changes in police protocol with domestic calls in other departments, notably, New York City, Dallas, and New Zealand. From this tumultuous era, the construction of the freeway system and subsequent white flight emptied Minneapolis' population to a low of 350,000 in 1990. However the demand for policing continued to rise to over 700 officers in that decade as drug use and gang activity continued to accelerate.
Gangs and homicides
Tensions among gangs following the acquittal of officers in the Rodney King beating trial in Los Angeles led to one of Minneapolis' darkest moments. On September 25, 1992, Officer Jerome (Jerry) Haaf was taking a break at the officers' popular Pizza Shack restaurant in Phillips and was shot behind the back by two Vice Lord gang members. The investigator with him was also wounded. Haaf died from his wounds at Hennepin County Medical Center and the members were later caught, convicted and sent to prison. Chief John Laux suggested the murder was possibly retaliation for an earlier incident in which Metro Transit Police removed a blind black man who did not have bus fare. At a community meeting earlier in the evening at North Community High School, gang members interrupted calling police brutality and insensitivity. The group's message had exacerbated a real ongoing issue of police brutality in the latter century. Former police chief Tony Bouza who oversaw the department in the 1980s called the force at the time "brutal." Mayor Sharon Sayles Belton, an African-American herself, stated in 1994 that excessive force was a problem.
In 1995, Mark Koscielski, a gun shop owner in present day Midtown Phillips coined the term "murderapolis." His T-shirts featuring the derisive term were quoted in a New York Times article. Murders had indeed peaked that year and the department sent three officers to New York City to study the Fixing Broken Windows crime-prevention program implemented by then Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Police Chief William Bratton. The officers returned to implement a new policing strategy, the Computer Optimized DEployment - Focus On Results (CODEFOR). A computer-based system, the strategy involves every unit of the MPD from patrol to special units to identify and concentrate policing on hot spots of crime. As technology has improved, the department continued to collect and increase reliance on statistical and data-based information.
In 2001, the tactic of racial profiling came to issue as the State Legislature attempted to mandate data collection of a person's race in traffic stops to reveal profiling trends. Though the measure was defeated, departments were offered incentives to volunteer for a pilot project to collect the data. MPD released its report in 2003 indicating it was more likely to stop a non-white person. The city under Mayor R.T. Rybak convened an audit of MPD to determine why and formulate steps to address the issue.
Communication between MPD and the community was strengthened when Community Crime Prevention/Safety for Everyone (CCP/SAFE) specialists were created to assist neighborhoods in organizing block clubs and disseminate crime information to residents. The Neighborhood Revitalization Program (NRP) which began in 1960 has just begun to realize its infrastructure and community improvements, as neighborhoods once severely impacted by crime and deterioration had begun to turn around. The Whittier neighborhood became a model example of the program's benefit. CODEFOR finally reached a decade of data collection revealing definitive crime trends and in 2007, the precincts implemented official neighborhood policing plans based on this data.
In 1998, the re-routing of Minnesota State Highway 55 brought protests from the Hiawatha neighborhood of Longfellow community and members of the Mendota Mdewakanton community. Police protection was ordered for construction workers. In July 2000, a clash with protesters at an International Society of Animal Genetics conference and a following raid on a non-profit office suspected of organizing the protest drew attention of the City Council. They publicly questioned Chief Olson who revealed that 40 undercover police agents were in the demonstrations and that 400 to 500 Minneapolis police officers were assigned to the week-long conference.
More recently, the Minneapolis Police Department has made efforts to work closely with local community organizations and residents to more effectively assure security. A significant drop in the crime rate has consequently been registered throughout the city, plummeting 42% from 2005 to 2011.
In 2002, Olson was accused of stalling federal U.S. Department of Justice mediation between the MPD and hometown civil rights groups focused around North Minneapolis. Unpopular with Mayor R. T. Rybak, Olson was ousted in 2003 and William McManus was appointed, former chief of Dayton, Ohio, and former assistant chief in Washington, D.C. His tenure was intended to reverse Olson's past actions. McManus worked on improving internal promotions and politics within the department to achieve racial equality in officer ranks. The attempted overhaul of Internal Affairs and greater attention over policing did generate larger respect for the department from communities of color and even gang members. However, his support was split in the Council, and though personally endorsed, he conflicted with Mayor Rybak over promotions and the handling of the 2003 Duy Ngo incident, in which Ngo, an undercover officer, was shot by another officer. In early 2006, facing an uncertain reconfirmation for a second three-year term, McManus sought and accepted the police chief position in San Antonio, Texas.
Though McManus improved internal diversity during his tenure, his efforts did not address department racism, traced to former chief Olson. In December 2007, five high ranking black police officers filed a lawsuit against the department alleging a long history of systemic racial discrimination and a hostile working environment toward black officers and in April 2009, the city settled with them for $740,000.
Assistant Chief Tim Dolan succeeded McManus and was shortly promoted to Police Chief. Sharon Lubinski was appointed Assistant Chief. Under Chief Dolan's watch, the I-35W Mississippi River bridge collapsed on August 1, 2007. Agencies involved in the recovery efforts operated smoothly under post 9/11 disaster and emergency management training. Providing 75 law enforcement units, the MPD's immediate role was to ensure safety and control of neighborhoods surrounding the bridge. For several months after, the traffic control unit was on call to direct traffic. The Minneapolis Emergency Communications Center (911 center) was recognized in 2008 for their efficient role in the incident.
The head of the Minneapolis Police Department is the Chief of Police and the Assistant Chief. The department is organized into three administrative bureaus: Patrol, Investigations, and Professional Standards each led by a Deputy Chief. The Patrol Bureau divides the city into five precincts each with a Precinct Commander, given the rank of Inspector. MPD operates under a decentralized structure giving independence to each precinct and bureau to manage crime and policing.
The Patrol Bureau provides comprehensive police services such as 911 response, crime prevention, traffic control and emergency services. The bureau comprises the five precincts, the Special Operations Division, Community Crime Prevention/SAFE Central and the Police Athletic League.
Special Operations Division
- Bomb-Arson Unit
- Homeland Security
- Mounted Patrol
The Minneapolis Mounted Patrol Unit is headquartered at the First Precinct and has 8 full-time riders of the 30 fully trained MPD sworn officers in the unit. It is the largest mounted patrol in the five-state Upper Midwest and operates on donations. Minneapolis owns 11 horses that commute from a rented barn in Delano, Minnesota. Part of the older waterworks plant in Columbia Heights will be converted into a new stable.
- Police Activities League (PAL)
- Special Events/Reserve
- Strategic Operations Unit
- Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT)
- Traffic Enforcement and Accident Investigation
- Traffic Control
The Investigations Bureau performs comprehensive investigative services, including case management, suspect criteria, victim support and preparation of evidence for court. The bureau comprises the Criminal Investigations Division, Crime Lab and Support Services.
Professional Standards Bureau
The Professional Standards Bureau focuses on the integrity of department employees from background screening through hiring and ongoing training and maintains the technical operations of the department. The bureau comprises the Background Unit, Internal Affairs, Mediation Compliance, Recruitment, Training, Business Technology Unit and Intellectual Properties.
- Business Technology
- Internal Affairs
Volunteer units and activities
The Minneapolis Police Reserve is a volunteer 60 non-sworn officer unit in charge of emergency preparedness, general public safety, and provides major support for traffic and crowd control. Officers are non-sworn and wear a light blue uniform with black slacks. Conceived after World War II as the civil defense force in anticipation of a nuclear attack during the Cold War, the reserve's role diminished after the Soviet-era. The unit's responsibility however was reaffirmed after the attacks of September 11, 2001 and was reassigned under the Minneapolis Police Department's Emergency Preparedness Coordinator, tasked with domestic defense in situations of civil unrest and disasters. Though officers are not on regular active patrols, they are on-call 24 hours and respond to rioting, protests, officer shootings, large crime scenes, fires and explosions, and natural disasters, as well as events requiring a security presence such as dignitaries and concerts. They also provide officers to traffic control.
The MPD also has other volunteer activities including
- Police Band
- Police Chaplain Corps
- Police Explorers
- Police Athletic League (PAL)
- Block Club Leaders
- Police Precinct Advisory Councils
- McGruff House Program
- Community Justice Project
|Title||Insignia||Insignia (dress uniform cuff)|
|Chief of Police||Four gold stripes and one gold star|
|Assistant Chief||Three gold stripes and one gold star|
|Deputy Chief||Three gold stripes|
|Inspector||Two gold stripes|
|Chaplain||Two gold stripes|
|Captain||Two gold stripes|
|Police Officer / Detective|
In the fall of 1990, the Department was featured on the first six episodes of Season 3 of the police reality show, COPS. The department was later featured in Season 21 of the show, which aired in 2008 and 2009.
Five other police forces operate in Minneapolis with the Minneapolis Police Department being the largest.
- The University of Minnesota Police Department (UMPD) serves the University of Minnesota's Twin Cities campus. The department employs over 50 sworn officers. The Chief of Police is Greg Hestness, a former Deputy Chief of the Minneapolis Police Department. Under Hestness' watch, the UMPD increased its cooperation with the Minneapolis Police Department and now frequently responds Minneapolis' calls for service and backs up MPD Officers in need of assistance.
- The Minneapolis Park Police Department had 22 sworn patrol officers and 21 park patrol agents as of 2008 who are responsible for law enforcement in city parks.
- The Metro Transit Police Department (officially Metropolitan Transit Police) patrols bus routes and light rail and as of 2008 had 60 full-time and 60 part-time officers.
- The Metropolitan Airports Commission has a police force.
- The Hennepin County Sheriff's Office with 800 licensed and civilian members is headquartered in Minneapolis.
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