(TMU) – Early Sunday morning after the bars closed in downtown Minneapolis, drivers were doing burnouts and donuts for large crowds at an intersection directly outside of a police department.
The festivities took place at the intersection of First Avenue and North 4th Street, directly outside of the city’s 1st Precinct. Videos shared on social media showed multiple drivers doing stunts with their vehicles outside of the police station.
Minneapolis Police Department spokesperson John Elder told CBS that the drivers were “hot-rodding.”
“One of those vehicles loses control, and there’s that many people there on foot, that creates a very serious hazard,” Elder said.
Surprisingly, the police did not give the drivers or the crowds any trouble, but that wasn’t intentional, they were actually busy responding to two different homicides in the city and did not have the resources to deal with some people having a little bit of dangerous fun in the street. The size of the crowds watching the excitement could have been another reason that the police declined to intervene.
“You’re not able to send one officer in to deal with this. You’re going to need to send in a contingent to be able to get in, get crowds moved, get those vehicles stopped, and to be able to do it safely,” Elder said.
While this type of activity is somewhat common during the summer months in the city, residents have been less concerned about getting caught by police.
“They just seem to be a little bit more aggressive this year,” Elder said.
Police and some local residents are concerned that these types of gatherings could be dangerous because someone could get hurt if a car loses control and goes into a crowd. Accidents of this nature do happen occasionally, but they are not extremely common.
Minneapolis downtown Saturday night 2:30am getting too crazy…
Posted by Bolo Young on Sunday, August 9, 2020
The Minneapolis Police Department answers about four hundred thousand calls a year and does fifty thousand proactive stops a year. Among American cities with a population of over 100,000, Minneapolis is in the top twenty-five in terms of the crime rate.
Occasionally, Minneapolis is in the top ten in the nation for cities with the most crime. Minneapolis made $14 million in payouts for cases of police misconduct between 2006 and 2012.
The Minneapolis City Council’s proposal to dismantle the city’s police department will not be on the November ballot after the Minneapolis Charter Commission voted Wednesday to take more time to review the plan, according to CNN.
Council President Lisa Bender expressed disappointment in the delay in a Tweet after the vote, but promised that the council will continue to pursue their goal of radically overhauling the police department.
“The Charter Commission’s vote is disappointing and creates barriers to change but it will not stop our work to re-imagine public safety in (Minneapolis). Our work always was and remains multi-pronged, including a 911 workgroup, MPD staffing study, investment in violence prevention & more,” she wrote.
The chair of the Charter Commission told CNN that he plans to call a special meeting next week to develop a work plan for the next 90 days.
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