Minneapolis has quickly become one of the most dangerous cities in the nation. It wasn’t always this way, but the rise of the “defund police” movement affecting both the Mayor’s office and city council combined with hesitancy that has spawned throughout the law enforcement community following last year’s release of the George Floyd video have turned the city into a cesspool of crime and violence.
Police Chief Medaria Arradondo has been under immense pressure to turn things back around in the city. While he fights the narrative of Black Lives Matter and the constant virtue signaling of his own Mayor, Jacob Frey, he has tried to bring law and order back. During a joint press conference with the Mayor and others, Arradondo turned attention to the judges in the city and county who have been making his job more difficult.
“And I have a specific message for our judges,” he said. “And while I respect the immense judicial responsibility you have, I want to tell you something. I know that when it comes to sentencing, that you look at an individual’s criminal history and oftentimes that sentencing is based on the lengthiness of their criminal history.”
Chief Medaria Arradondo pleaded with judges to stop releasing violent offenders at a press conference today following a violent weekend in Minneapolis. pic.twitter.com/FyPlumTIcF
— Alpha News (@AlphaNewsMN) May 17, 2021
Arradondo was being too kind. Judges in the area have been known to go light on sentencing first- or second-time offenders, but oftentimes their shorter criminal history is just an excuse to release them early. They have generally become “social justice judges” who use the bench as an activist platform to empower criminals and hamper law enforcement. Their light sentencing has been their version of virtue-signaling; any sentence that is deemed “too long” by Black Lives Matter “activists” is instantly labeled as a bigoted attack by the systemic racism that is allegedly rampant in the city’s justice system.
This has prompted many judges to release violent criminals quickly back into the communities where they invariably turn again to criminal acts. Arradondo called them out, albeit nicely, by noting that first- and second-offenders are often just as violent as “seasoned” criminals.
“Well I want our judges to know that we are seeing a phenomenon in our city and across the country where violent acts where multiple, multiple gunshots are ringing out are sometimes occurring and that is the individual’s first or second offense,” he said.
For his part, Frey’s message was almost the opposite. His proposed reforms to the city’s handling of crime is to be MORE lenient. He announced a series of proposals that have been developed over several months with a focus on a “compassionate approach” to community safety.
“It’s been nearly a year since the murder of George Floyd and right now Minneapolis is at a crossroads,” Frey said at the news conference. “What’s clear is that right now our children’s futures are at stake. Our children’s lives are being cut short.”
Despite the rhetoric that claims to embrace law and order, the actual proposals push away from stronger policing. According to Frey’s office, the proposals address the current spike in violent crime, investment in prevention, intervention and enforcement strategies, and a commitment to “community-led work and deeper partnerships to address root causes of crime.” The reality of these proposals with their stamp of approval from Black Lives Matter is to redirect law enforcement efforts in ways that will not actually benefit the community.
Arradondo’s approach is more direct as he continued to asked judges to stop pandering to violent criminals and the “activists” who demand their expedited release.
“We’re part of an ecosystem of public safety,” he said. “Our men and women are going to rush into harm’s way, and they’re going to apprehend those criminals. But to our judges, I beg you to reexamine when you are releasing violent individuals back out to our communities. There’s a price that we all pay for that. And so I need you to reexamine that.”
What good is it to have law enforcement arrest violent criminals if activist judges are going to put them back onto the streets shortly after? It’s disheartening for police to have to arrest someone again weeks or even days after they arrested them for a previous crime.