MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minneapolis police union is responding after an overhaul of the police department’s use of force policy was announced by the police chief and mayor.
During a Wednesday news conference, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey and Police Chief Medaria Arradondo said the new policy requires that officers use the lowest level of force to safely engage a subject, and that officers must consider all reasonable alternatives before using deadly force.
In a statement, the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis said its officers only heard of the changes through the media.
“Rank and file officers, who the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis represents, heard about this critical new policy just now through the media, as the administration has not yet discussed changes with the officers,” the union said.
The union says it’s reviewing the new updated policy, but says it’s careless to announce a new policy without informing officers, or training them, on the changes.
“This is another example of how the lack of training and poor political leadership hurts officers and the public,” the statement said.
The Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis continues by saying that the focus should be on ending the “extreme, escalated violence” in Minneapolis.
“Homicides, shootings, and other types of crime are at unprecedented levels. Six people were shot over the weekend, and a 17-year-old girl was murdered. We need to be focusing on deterring criminals, and assisting and protecting victims of crime for a safer city for everyone,” the union said.
The union’s response came before looting and destruction erupted in downtown Minneapolis Wednesday evening.
Looters smashed the windows at dozens of buildings and ransacked several businesses following a rumor that police killed a man on Nicollet Mall, even though authorities promptly released a video showing the man, a homicide suspect, shooting himself.