May 28, 2015 —
December 26, 2012 — The case of an accidental shooting death of a 2-year-old boy is in the hands of the Hennepin County Attorney's office. Authorities are considering what charges, if any, to bring against a Minneapolis father who they say left a loaded handgun within reach of his children. Police say the toddler was killed when his 4-year-old brother was playing with the gun. As Laura Yuen reports, these kinds of cases are tough calls for prosecutors. They say they often struggle to strike a balance between justice and compassion.
November 24, 2009 — Authorities said today that a LeSeuer County sheriff's deputy who shot and killed an unarmed man in July feared for his life when he pulled the trigger. Assistant Anoka County attorney Andrew Johnson says deputy Todd Waldron had seen 24-year-old Tyler Heilman driving recklessly a few minutes earlier, and confronted him at a Kasota apartment building. Johnson says the deputy claimed he'd been wrestled to the ground and put in a chokehold.
November 2, 2009 — Over the last few months, incidents involving Minneapolis officers have become the subject of media scrutiny and six-figure lawsuit settlements. The settlements prompt questions about police training, culture and discipline. And these settlements have raised concerns about the leadership of police chief Tim Dolan. Dolan, who is up for reappointment to a new three-year term, says he's committed to cracking down on misconduct. But some say, no matter what Dolan does, lawsuits and settlements are just part of the price of policing.
October 29, 2009 — Police and civil rights advocates debated Minnesota's forfeiture laws at the state Capitol today, in the wake of the Gang Strike Force scandal. Defense attorneys and representatives of the American Civil Liberties Union said the gang unit had abused the laws that let them seize and keep property and cash used in the commission of a crime. The critics said the practice invited abuse and should be changed. But law enforcement officials said the law was sound, and that a few unscrupulous police officers were the problem. John Kingrey is head of the Minnesota County Attorneys Association. He talked to lawmakers about the alleged misconduct described in a recent state investigation.
September 22, 2009 — A plan to clean up the remnants of the Metro Gang Strike Force began to take shape at the Capitol today. The 35-member unit was dismantled this summer, after allegations of improper seizures of money and property and other police misconduct.
September 22, 2009 — A judge has sentenced former Minneapolis police officer Mike Roberts to one year in jail. Roberts had pleaded guilty to four federal charges earlier this year.
September 17, 2009 — Minneapolis police union lawyers say an officer involved in a high-profile, wrongful-death trial has been unjustly fired. They want Officer Jason Andersen to get his job back. His lawyers say Andersen was singled out by the police administration, even though he'd been cleared in court and on another charge. Chief Tim Dolan didn't address Andersen's case directly, but issued a news release today defending the department's disciplinary process.
September 1, 2009 — Protesters and other individuals who were arrested on the first day of the Republican National Convention filed the city of St. Paul today. Twenty-seven named plaintiffs allege police officers violated their constitutional rights when they rounded up about 200 people and placed them under arrest. Kevin Hundt of LaCrosse, Wisconsin, says he thinks the mass arrests were aimed at squelching free speech. While some officers used tear gas and flash bangs to control the crowd, the 23-year-old protester says other officers were just mean.
August 31, 2009 — The co-author of a report on the Metro Gang Strike Force is expected to meet with law enforcement agencies this week to identify the officers accused of misconduct. That report alleges some strike force members confiscated things like big-screen tvs, computers and money from people who weren't charged with crimes. One scholar who studies police accountability says the force's major failure was that no one was in charge. Samuel Walker of the University of Nebraska says going forward such specialized units need layers of control.