Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo on Tuesday broke his public silence on a charter amendment that would replace his department with a new public safety agency partly under the City Council's control, saying the move would be "wholly unbearable" for any law enforcement leader.
In November, city residents will get a chance to decide whether to adopt a charter amendment that would replace the MPD with a new agency that proponents say would have a public health-centered approach, seeking to identify and address the root causes of crime. Under the proposal, written by an anti-police political group called Yes 4 Minneapolis, the new public safety department could likely still include police officers — though the city would no longer be required to keep a minimum number based on the city's population — and would be under the combined control of the Council and the mayor. Under the current model, Arradondo answers only to the mayor.
On Tuesday, Arradondo for the first time waded into the politically charged issue, saying that in his 30 years with the department he had seen firsthand "the operational efficiency is essential to both building trust and public safety," the Star-Tribune reports.
Putting the department under the control of the 13-person Council and mayor, he said, would threaten that safety with "additional layers of bureaucracy."