MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minnesota Freedom Fighters is a self-described elite security unit.

Its members, including Jamil Jackson and Tyrone Hartwell, are working to bridge the gap between the police and the community.

During the social unrest after George Floyd’s death, peaceful protests became dangerous.

“The call was made originally by the NAACP for community members to come out and help patrol the West Broadway corridor,” Jackson said.

Local residents who say they have permits to carry firearms answered that call.

“Some of us didn’t even know each other beforehand, a lot of us did know each other beforehand, but we built a brotherhood,” Hartwell said.

Their patrolling did make a difference.

“For about ten nights we patrolled West Broadway, making sure that our buildings were safe, making sure the community was safe,” Jackson said.

The men worked together so well, they decided to form a tactical security company.

(credit: CBS)

“We are a community-based organization that are here to protect and patrol our community,” Jackson said. “Someone who can go into areas that maybe the police can’t go into and help.”

The Minnesota Freedom Fighters are not trying to replace police but rather build relationships that help in the betterment of the community, which lacks trust with the police.

The group says they have a good relationship with Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo.

“We just want our community to understand that they do have somebody they can count on and that we’re here to, you know, create a safer place, a place of peace,” Hartwell said.

Their goal is change and for constitutional freedom, including the Second Amendment, to be shared by all.

“It definitely makes us to feel good to know that we’re part of it and that we’re able to be on the front lines to help secure those people that are using their voice to promote change,” Jackson said.

The Minnesota Freedom Fighters are holding a meet-and-greet Saturday morning at 11 a.m. in north Minneapolis.

A GoFundMe account has been set up to help support the group.

Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield

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