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Robbinsdale Police Chief Resigns After Prostitution Sting

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The Robbinsdale police chief stepped down Saturday after being issued a citation for hiring and engaging in prostitution by the Coon Rapids Police Department on Feb. 20.

Police Chief Steven Douglas Smith was one of 10 suspects who were arrested, detained and issued citations by the Coon Rapids Police after they conducted a prostitution sting at a private residence in the city of Coon Rapids.

Robbinsdale Mayor Regan Murphy said Smith submitted his resignation to the city manager early Saturday afternoon.
Murphy said Smith made “lots of important contributions to Robbinsdale,” but “at the end of the day, you have to follow the law.”

The mayor said he is saddened for the former chief and his family.

The city had no prior knowledge of the incident, according to Murphy.

Jim Franzen is acting as interim police chief and has been a captain in the department for many years.

“All I ask is moving forward, we’ve got someone in place that’s going to do a fantastic job and to judge the department and city on actual interaction during work in Robbinsdale rather than one individual, off duty, in another town,” Murphy said.

Smith is expected in court for an arraignment on Monday. In Minnesota, an engaging in prostitution charge is a misdemeanor.

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