MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Leadership within the Minneapolis Police Department is in the process of changing.
Amelia Huffman is currently serving as interim police chief. She took over after Chief Medaria Arradondo retired in January.
Interest in the search was heightened Wednesday following a report released by the Minnesota Department of Human Rights which paints a disturbing picture of racism in Minneapolis. A two-year state investigation finds Minneapolis police are more likely to target, arrest or use force against someone who is Black.
MORE: Dept. Of Human Rights Investigation Finds MPD, City Of Mpls. Engage In Race Discrimination
Some Minneapolis families hope a fresh face will blaze a new trail, with no room for the type of behavior outlined by the state.
Just hours after the report’s release, a community listening session was held. It was a chance to rebuild something better. Minneapolis City Councilmember LaTrisha Vetaw, who represents Ward 4, was on hand.
“You never want this type of stuff to come, but it couldn’t come at a better time. We’re at a pivotal point in our city,” Vetaw said. “Our dirty laundry has been aired in a big way and we can’t like back away from it. It’s out there. We have to start working.”
Ward 3 City Councilmember Michael Rainville was also at Wednesday evening’s meeting.
“[The report] is very hard to read. A lot of harm has been done, but it’s good news in a way that we’re gonna have a road map now,” Rainville said.
The meeting was held primarily to give residents a chance to say what they want to see in a new police chief.
“Folks want a chief who is gonna hold police accountable,” Vetaw said. “I think it’s a combination of police skills, but also a passion for community.”
Sara Jones is part of the search committee that will help choose the next chief. It is a process that will be colored by MDHR’s report.
MORE: ‘It’s Vindication’: George Floyd’s Aunt, Others React To Findings Against MPD
“I think we have a tough challenge,” Jones said. “I’m just so glad that the report came out before the search process got too far along. This is all information that any police chief is gonna have to understand, absorb and be willing to take action on.”
But some say there’s now an opportunity to rebuild something stronger.
“My family members have these experiences,” Vetaw said. “These hard times for me as someone who has lived it, I feel inspired. People want to do the work now.”
The search committee member acknowledged this new police chief will truly have to be a “unicorn candidate.” There are hopes a chief will be appointed by the end of July.
Source : https://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2022/04/27/minneapolis-police-chief-search/