Source Cnn.com: While Saturday’s protests were mostly peaceful, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey was confronted with a chorus of booing after he told a group of protesters that he did not support the abolition of the city police.
Several videos in the social media show the confrontation that took place as protesters marched to Frey’s house and asked him to come out, according to CNN subsidiary WCCO-TV. Demonstrators asked Frey directly if he supported the defunding of the Minneapolis Police Department.
When Minneapolis mayor Frey replied that he did not, he was booed off by the crowd as he walked away. They also sang “Go home, Jacob, go home” and “Shame,” according to a video posted on Twitter
The mayor championed issues of police reform
In a statement to CNN, a spokesman for Frey said the mayor was “unwavering in his commitment to work with Chief (Medaria) Arradondo to implement far-reaching structural reforms and uproot systemic racism. He does not support the abolition of the police department.”
The 38-year-old Minneapolis mayor was sworn in in 2018 and is the second youngest in the city’s history. According to the city’s website, Frey was an employment and civil rights lawyer before taking office.
One of the issues he dealt with was police reform. Part of his platform, according to Ballotpedia, included the introduction of the use of force reform, implicit bias training, de-escalation techniques and the accountability of officers.
His website says he strengthened police guidelines for body-worn cameras, but did not provide further details of the mayor’s measures to improve relations between officials and the community.
Frey told WCCO that he supports “massive structural reforms” to revise a racist system and address “inherent inequalities”.
Call for defensiveness and a history of discrimination
The confrontation between Frey and the demonstrators stems from the fact that thousands of people across the country are demanding police reform and protesting against the death of unarmed African Americans, sometimes through law enforcement agencies. Recent deaths include George Floyd in Minneapolis, Breonna Taylor in Louisville and Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia.
The incident also occurred the day after Frey signed a temporary restraining order with the state to enforce immediate police reforms, such as banning the use of chokeholds and requiring the police chief to authorize the use of all weapons of mass control, WCCO reported.
The call to invalidate the department is one of several in the country after George Floyd died in police custody in Minneapolis. Even the police chief has a long history with the department he now heads, which is riddled with allegations of discrimination.
In 2007, Chief Arrandondo was one of five black police officers in Minneapolis who claimed that city leadership tolerates discrimination against colored people, including officers in their own department.
The officers filed a civil suit based on “their own experiences with the force from the time they were recruited under their current status at the time of 2007,” attorney John Klassen, who represented the officers, told CNN.
The officers experienced their individual “discrimination in the workplace” while at the same time “observing every day, every week and every year the actions of white officers against colored citizens. They had to stand and watch and read and listen and see nothing.” Effective action against these officers because of their strong belief that these are constitutional violations and discrimination against citizens by Minneapolis police,” Klassen said.
There was no corrective action or assumption of liability when the case was dismissed out of court with a settlement of more than $800,000, but Klassen said that the transition to new leadership in the department, including Chief Arradondo, and the “change in mayoral leadership of the. has led to an increase in the recruitment of minority officials. “
Despite the new leadership and increased awareness of racial inequality, Arrandondo told CNN’s Sara Sidner last week that the department needed to do better.
“It didn’t take me days, weeks, months, trials or bureaucracies to tell me what happened here last Monday was wrong,” he added.
He said he had held the four officers involved in Floyd’s death fully accountable, relieving them of their duties and dismissing their actions as “violations of humanity”.
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