Nonprofit, nonpartisan journalism. Supported by readers.


Police union’s animosity toward Hodges dates to her time on Minneapolis City Council

MinnPost photo by Peter Callaghan
Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis president Lt. John Delmonico listens as Mayor Betsy Hodges talks about a police body cams pilot project that began last Friday.

Digging deeper into the motivations behind #pointergate, the Strib’s Eric Roper and Libor Jany say, “The aftermath of the widely criticized KSTP television story last week has brought into the open an intense disagreement between the police union and the mayor that some say stretches back to her tenure on the Minneapolis City Council. … Dolan said that some of the rift may be traced to Hodges’ time on the council, when she clashed with union leaders during contentious pension negotiations. Lt. Mike Sauro, a 40-year veteran of the department who was at the negotiations, said the process did not endear cops to Hodges. ‘Promises that were made, she said those were made by past administrations, those don’t apply now,’ Sauro said Monday. ‘I don’t think she likes cops, regardless of what her actions suggest.’” Sauro, still on the force.

Meanwhile, good luck with this. Jon Collins at MPR writes, “A community group at the heart of the ‘pointergate’ uproar is asking KSTP to apologize for the story aired by the television station on Thursday night … . NOC Executive Director Anthony Newby said his organization and [Navell] Gordon are asking KSTP for a formal, on-air apology to Gordon. He said the story, which didn’t name Gordon and blurred his face, reduced him to a stand-in for a scary African-American criminal. The group intentionally hires people with criminal backgrounds who have served their time. … About 3,000 people have signed an online petition launched by the organization in the last 36 hours.”

On the worst of the snow missing the bulk of the metro area, MPR’s Paul Huttner confesses, “Heavy snow persisted as expected in the north and northwest metro, but forecast snowfall totals under-performed in the central and southern Twin Cities. A little self critique and forecast candor on my Sunday forecast here. I bought into the more southerly storm track on the bulk of Sunday’s forecast model runs and my forecast totals for the north metro and points north were spot on…but were too high for central & south metro snowfall totals. … The storm intensity performed as expected, it just jogged about 40 miles north from most of Sunday’s model solutions. That happens in Minnesota winter storms. The metro was within that 40-mile change zone.”

Preliminary crash totals: KARE-TV says, “At least two people have died in crashes on icy roads as the first blast of wintry weather hits Minnesota. The State Patrol says in south-central Minnesota, a car driver was killed after losing control and colliding with a semi-truck. In a separate accident, the Carver County sheriff’s office says a driver died after a vehicle went into the ditch southwest of Minneapolis. Troopers handled 475 crashes and more than 700 spinouts statewide as of 7 p.m. Monday.”

At Sports Illustrated writers Chris Burke and Doug Farrar do a chat on the future for Adrian Peterson. “[Burke]: It would cost the Vikings a mere $2.4 million to cut Peterson after this season. So at this point, my best guess is that they hold onto him through 2014 but keep him on the sideline, and then try to dump him off on another team for some small draft-pick compensation and cut him if/when no one comes calling. Peterson’s base salaries of $12.75 million, $14.75 million and $16.75 million over the next three seasons will make any trade for him rather untenable for another organization, even with the absence of guaranteed money. It’s hard to see how this ends in any way other than the Vikings releasing Peterson.” Oh come on! The Cowboys will take him.

To the courts! Sasha Aslanian at MPR reports, “Three Twin Cities suburbs and an interfaith group have filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development alleging that Minnesota is violating the Fair Housing Act. Brooklyn Center, Brooklyn Park, Richfield and the Metropolitan Interfaith Council on Affordable Housing said state agencies and the Metropolitan Council are intentionally concentrating low-income rental housing in segregated ‘low opportunity’ neighborhoods. A board member with MIRAH says the organization wants the Met Council to apply more pressure on predominantly white, affluent suburbs to comply with affordable housing goals.”

In the PiPress, Nick Woltman reports on St. Paul officials bringing neighbors of the Ford plant site up to date on what’s happening. “[Council member Chris] Tolbert said sentiment so far has strongly favored mixed-use development that incorporates transit and green space, something he said is in short supply in Highland Park. … Ford expects to have the property on the market by late 2015. The company hopes to sell the entire parcel to a single master developer, which would divide it into smaller parcels.”

In the annals of not-too bright tough guys: The AP reports, “A 21-year-old Minneapolis man is charged in federal court with threatening an FBI agent during a routine interview. The U.S. Attorney’s office says Mohamed Ali Omar made an initial court appearance Monday. According to the complaint, two FBI agents and a language interpreter went to Omar’s house on Thursday to interview a member of his family. Prosecutors say when the agents and interpreter arrived, Omar opened the door and told the agents that he had a ‘permit to carry, and if they came back, he would get them.’”

The hell with the turkey, let’s shop. Says Martin Moylan for MPR, “Target will join other big retailers in opening stores at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day — two hours earlier than the retailer welcomed customers last year. Edward Jones retail analyst Brian Yarbrough says Target, like other retailers, doesn’t want to lose sales to competitors who get an earlier start on Black Friday promotions. ‘Target’s going to go right in line with everyone else,’ Yarbrough said.”

Let’s hope the NCAA isn’t using the NFL’s contract terms. WCCO-TV’s Pat Kessler says, “Six months after winning a bid to host the 2018 Super Bowl, Minnesota is making a bid for the NCAA Final four. In Indianapolis Tuesday, a state delegation will present a plan to hold the college basketball championships in 2019 or 2020. Minnesota is one of eight locations competing for a Final Four between 2017 and 2020.”

Comments (4)

  1. Submitted by richard owens on 11/11/2014 - 08:52 am.

    You better use public transit Brian,

    The Minneapolis Police bring most of their victims into the system from vehicle stops, and you could be next.

    Revealing the MILLION DOLLARS Mike Sauro has already cost taxpayers might make you a target for a MPD disciplinary whupping.

    Speaking of which, when will we be done disciplining Adrian Peterson for disciplining his son?

    Would it help to (at least) look at these two incidents of violence as having their roots in CULTURAL PROBLEMS?

    The whole country at one time engaged in corporal punishment, as socially acceptible even against male school kids and high school athletes.

    The fact that Minnesota has less of it than it once did doesn’t change the cultural norms in Texas (maybe for another half generation. Will Adrian’s kid switch his son? MAYBE NOT.

    Will Minneapolis cops keep beating up “perps”? That should be stopped a long long time ago. I encourage others to read the link Brian gave:

    Changing culture seems to be in order.

  2. Submitted by Tim Walker on 11/11/2014 - 10:30 am.

    Back in the 90s …

    … when I was a grad student in Journalism at the U of MN, one of my colleagues in the photojournalism program did a ride along with a pair of Minneapolis cops.

    One of the two cops my fellow student chronicled with her camera was Mike Sauro, and I distinctly remember her describing her encounter with him as being extremely eye-opening.

    She was shocked at the aggressive and arrogant nature of cop culture in general, and especially of the attitude of Officer Sauro, whom she describe as “pyscho” …

    I think she was very perceptive.

  3. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 11/11/2014 - 11:55 am.

    If Mayor Hodges Has Hurt the Feelings of Some of the Cops

    Perhaps it’s time for those cops to remember that the Mayor is their boss’s boss,…

    and they are supposed to be serving the people of Minneapolis.

    It’s ALWAYS been the case that some cops join the force in order to exorcise the ego demons brought about by their internal fears that they’re quivering wimps,…

    by daily throwing their weight around especially at people whom they perceive to lack the community standing to come back at them.

    The sad thing is, the healthier cops could, if given the chance, tell you exactly who the dangerously dysfunctional ones are.

    Perhaps it’s time for a bit of psychological testing of the Minneapolis Police force and a bit of house cleaning as the result. No doubt the officers who were asked to leave would be perfectly comfortable in Fergusen, Missouri, Phoenix, Arizona or working for Joe Arpaio.

  4. Submitted by Edward Blaise on 11/12/2014 - 11:04 am.

    Note to John Delmonico:

    If you don’t like the Mayor, give it the old Charlie Stenvig. One of your predecessors in the union who ran and won the mayor’s office and also did not get along well with the cops once put in a position of accountability to the citizens.

Leave a Reply