Reporting Bill Hudson
ST. PAUL (WCCO) — In unmarked vehicles, four teams of St. Paul Police family violence officers spread out across the east metro Wednesday — armed with the list of 60 offenders wanted by outstanding arrest warrants.
Commander Axel Henry heads the St. Paul police department’s Family & Sexual Violence Unit (FSVU). He said the concentrated effort is part of a pledge made to victims.
“It’s the promise we make when they come forward and make the police report against a loved one, spouse or family member,” said Henry. “We’re going to take this seriously and follow through on these cases all the way!”
Wednesday’s detail is part of a larger nationwide effort across 22 states involving 170 law enforcement agencies. It’s called the National Domestic Violence Apprehension Detail.
St. Paul officers Dave McCabe and Sergeant Sean Johnson are working in tandem with several Ramsey County deputies. They are one of four units sweeping the east metro in a concerted attempt to arrest suspects wanted for domestic violence related warrants.
At one of the first homes they visit on St. Paul’s east side, they knock on the door and talk with the alleged victim. She is uncooperative and won’t let them into the home. Officers have reason to believe the suspect they are after is hiding inside and in violation of a no-contact order. Because it is a follow-up address from their first attempt to find the man, the address is not listed on their arrest warrant.
Five other addresses will be attempted before the team finds their first wanted suspect. They are in the Hillcrest neighborhood, where Rekoe Howard answers the door. The 41-year-old is taken without incident and is wanted for punching an ex-wife.
Later in the day, they will converge on an apartment in North St. Paul, where a knock on the apartment door results in a second arrest. Jauan Love is wanted for multiple counts of domestic violence and interfering with a 911 call.
With every knock on the door, they’re greeted with uncertainty and reminded of danger of such operations. Ironically, it is a warrant attempted at another nearby apartment building that brings a chilling reminder. It is the same building where North St. Paul police officer Richard Crittenden was gunned down in 2009 — responding to a domestic disturbance.
“You can’t take anything for granted,” said Johnson. “No never. They’re unpredictable!”
At the end of the day, some 60 warrants were attempted, resulting in a dozen arrests.