Here’s Why Violent Crime Is Skyrocketing in Minneapolis

Assistant Police Chief Medaria Arradondo and Mayor Betsy Hodges address the latest developments in the death of Justine Damond, Tuesday, July 18, 2017, in Minneapolis, Minn. Damond, of Australia, was shot and killed on Saturday, July 15 by a Minneapolis police officer after she called 911 to report what she believed to be a possible assault. (Richard Tsong-Taatarii/Star Tribune via AP)

 

The situation in Minneapolis has gotten much worse after its city council voted to defund the police and embraced a decidedly anti-police tone in their rhetoric. Crime, especially that of a violent nature, has been on the rise since the death of George Floyd, who was killed by a Minneapolis police officer about six months ago. 

Instead of working towards actual solutions to the problem of police brutality, the progressives who run the city decided to use Floyd’s death to push a far-leftist agenda, one that has nothing to do with keeping blacks, or anyone else, safe. Their decisions have resulted in a massive crime wave that rivals that of the 1990s when the city was known as “murderapolis.” 

The drastic rise in violent crime seems to result from an enormous number of police officers resigning and going on disability leave. The Washington Post noted that much of the crime is affecting predominantly black neighborhoods:

“Day and night the bullets zip through this predominantly Black neighborhood, hitting cars and homes and people. The scores of victims have included a 7-year-old boy, wounded in a drive-by shooting; a woman who took a bullet that came through her living room wall while she was watching television with her family; and a 17-year-old girl shot in the head and killed.”

Community activist Cathy Spann told the Post that there have been delays in 911 calls and it some cases, officers don’t respond at all. “If you want to talk about pandemics, we’re dealing with a pandemic of violence,” she said. She added, “our city has failed to protect us.” 

Spann’s observations seem to line up with the numbers. According to the Post:

“Homicides in Minneapolis are up 50 percent, with nearly 75 people killed across the city so far this year. More than 500 people have been shot, the highest number in more than a decade and twice as many as in 2019. And there have been more than 4,600 violent crimes — including hundreds of carjackings and robberies — a five-year high.”

Minneapolis police are struggling to respond to the surge in violent crime because the department has experienced an increasing number of officers leaving the force amid rioting, looting, and the betrayal of city council officials, who voted to defund and dismantle the agency. Police Chief Medaria Arradondo told the Post that over 100 officers have departed, which is more than double the amount in a typical year. 

The police departures include officers who have resigned or  filed disability claims. Some have cited experiencing symptoms related to post-traumatic stress disorder due to handling the violent protests that erupted after Floyd’s death. 

Arradondo told members of the Minneapolis Charter Commission, which is studying police staffing as part of the council’s initiative to reimagine policing, that he was forced to shut down several divisions in the department and place those officers on patrol due to the staffing shortages. 

From The Washington Post:

“He told the commission the department has about 735 sworn officers — down from the city’s budgeted 888 positions — of which about 500 were on patrol, he said. He warned that dropping below 500 officers on the streets would jeopardize the city’s crime response and that he and Mayor Jacob Frey had started to develop ‘contingency plans’ that would include ‘triaging calls’ for help, something he said he believes will erode public trust further.”

In an effort to deal with the crime wave, the city council on Friday voted to allocate nearly $500,000 to enable the police department to temporarily hire officers from other law enforcement agencies to help with patrols. “Our city is bleeding,” Arradondo told members of the council on Tuesday. “At this moment, I’m trying to do all I can to stop that bleeding.”

Of course, this is obviously nothing more than a band-aid on the problem, not an actual solution. As the city’s government continues failing to address the crime problem, ordinary residents are being victimized, and those who aren’t are living in fear. Karen Forbes, a South Minneapolis resident, told the council that criminals shot bullets through her living room wall, almost hitting her in the head. “I have relived that night many times, hearing the sounds of the bullets hitting my radiator and drywall spraying everywhere,” she  said.

It should be no surprise that crime would rise in Minneapolis after voting on measures to defund the police. The same thing is happening in Austin, TX after its city council voted to impose a similar measure.

It is also important to note that black residents of the city are suffering the brunt of the violence. The city council’s decision to defund and dismantle the police department was ostensibly designed to protect black Americans from police brutality, but instead, it has made them more vulnerable to violent criminals. 

As usual, progressive politicians are implementing fake solutions that make things worse for black people, not better. This is not a fluke, it’s a feature. It is difficult to imagine that these people somehow believed that vilifying and defunding the police would result in more safety. They ignored black leaders in the city who supported police reform but vociferously opposed defunding law enforcement. 

Believing that the city’s leaders didn’t at least have an idea that their decisions wouldn’t result in violent crime that would disproportionately impact the black community is too far of a stretch for reasonable folks. But perhaps their decision will be the impetus that gets them voted out of office. 

 

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