Last community listening session for next Minneapolis Police Chief

The MPD has been under scrutiny from residents and local city officials after the death of George Floyd in police custody on May 25
Photo credit Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

A series of community listening sessions in search of the next Minneapolis Police Chief are coming to an end. For the past two weeks, the City has hosted community listening sessions in various parts of the city. Great North Innocence Project, Attorney, Sara Jones has attended four out of the five listening sessions.

Jones is also on the Mayor’s Police Chief Search Committee.

"It's been really heartening to see how much people care about our city and its future and making sure that we vastly improve the situation with respect to our policing here in Minneapolis," she said.

Jones says accountability has emerged as a central theme. "People want a leader who is accountable to the community and will hold officers accountable, in a way that they haven't been able to in the past." Last week, the Minnesota Department of Human Rights released a scathing report of the Minneapolis Police Department.

"I'm hearing a lot about people wanting to feel safe from crime in their neighborhoods, and they also want to feel safe from the police," said Jones. Jones says she is optimistic. She believes the City will find a police chief with most, if not all, of the qualities Minneapolis residents are asking for.

Jones also says the community listening sessions are important because the feedback will be used in the job description to screen applicants. Interim Chief, Amelia Huffman, has expressed interest in the job. She was promoted after Maderia Arradondo retired from the post at the beginning of the year.

While the city has hundreds of thousands of residents, about forty people have been attending the meetings, said Jones. Residents can share their feedback online, if unable to attend in-person.

"The online survey asks for people's views on what the priorities should be for the new chief. What kinds of qualities we should be looking for? It's everybody's opportunity to have a voice," she said.

Click here to fill out the online survey. Tonight's meeting starts at 6pm at the Martin Luther King Jr. Park building on Nicollet Avenue.