The news came two months after the death of George Floyd due to police brutality. This particular incident sparked tremendous protests around the nation against racial inequality and police cruelty.
Minneapolis Police officers are leaving the department in bulk. According to The New York Times, “Nearly 200 police officers have applied to leave the Minneapolis Police Department because of what they describe as post-traumatic stress,” said Ronald F. Meuser Jr., a lawyer representing the officers. Around twenty percent (20%) of the officers of the department of 850 people want to leave their posts.
Almost 65 officers have already left the department which is higher than the departure number of 45 officers per year.
“It’s almost like a nuclear bomb hit the city, and the people who didn’t perish are standing around,” Officer Rich Walker Sr., a 16-year Minneapolis police veteran and union official, said of the current mood within the department. “I’m still surprised that we’ve got cops showing up to work, to be honest.”
The four officers who were involved in Floyd’s murder already got their due. Derek Chauvin, the officer who pressed the knee on Floyd’s neck, was fired from the department and charged with second-degree murder and manslaughter. The other three officers who detained Floyd were also charged with aiding and abetting murder.
The fact is that not only the protesters are losing faith in law enforcement, but the cops are also beginning to question their roles amid the outcry over excessive force.
According to the new AP-NORC poll, nearly eighty percent (80%) of the Americans say police brutality is a serious issue these days.
The department, however, did not confirm the disclosure of Atty. Meuser, and issued a different statement.
The department sent a message to Minneapolis Radio Station WCCO stating, “People seek to leave employment for a myriad of reasons. The MPD is no exception. Due to these employment separations, we have not noted any indicators that would impact public safety.”
Several police officers have told the Minneapolis Star Tribune newspaper that they are upset by the Mayor Jacob Frey’s decision to abandon the city’s third precinct during the overwhelming protest for Floyd’s death.
The officers were emotionally hurt when they were ordered to leave the said section of the city, and when their precinct house was burned.
“If we decided to continue to hold the 3rd Precinct there very likely would have been hand-to-hand combat, likely serious injury and maybe death, and in the decision between a building and life-or-death we decided to evacuate,” Frey has said.
All the 12 city council members of Minneapolis said last week that they wish to dismantle the city’s police department and replace it with a new model for ensuring the utmost safety for the city. The details of the new model still remain unclear.
The fourteen (14) police officers who said that they are speaking on behalf of the hundred police officers in the department have written an open letter to the people of Minneapolis, condemning the officer who pressed his knee on Floyd’s neck for nine minutes which caused his death.
“We wholeheartedly condemn Derek Chauvin. We are with you in the denouncement of Derek Chauvin’s actions on Memorial Day, 2020. Like us, Derek Chauvin took an oath to hold the sanctity of life most precious. Derek Chauvin failed as a human and stripped George Floyd of his dignity and life. This is not who we are,” the letter states.
The anti-racist protesters have peacefully occupied a four-block city which they have named “Capital Hill Autonomous Zone.” The organizers said that they want a neighborhood without police. A huge “Black Lives Matters” mural covers the huge area’s main corridor.
Different media houses are spreading false sensitive news to fire up the on-going issue. The Chicago Sun Time Newspaper report said that 75% of the people who were arrested for violating the city-wide curfew over the protest of Floyd’s death were Afro-Americans.
The Chicago Police Department said that the arrest had nothing to do with the race. The curfew enforcement was universal and equally enforced in neighborhoods.