September 28, 2021

Minneapolis business owners targeted by rioters on city council plans to dismantle police department

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Charles Stotts and Kacey White, the owners of a historic restaurant in Minneapolis that rioters burned down, told “Fox & Friends Weekend” on Sunday that they are “not even close” to rebuilding their business. “We did not own the building, we were tenants of the building so we don’t have a say of what gets rebuilt there and if the landlord that rebuilds wants another restaurant in there or not, but that area is, I would say, years out from being rebuilt,” White, the owner of Town Talk Diner & Gastropub, said on Sunday.“They have not begun demolition or removal of anything yet in that area,” she said. White made the comments two days after Minneapolis City Council members voted unanimously to amend the city’s charter to remove the mandate for a police department – the first step toward disbanding it in the wake of George Floyd’s death.The amendment proposes the city replace the police department with a Department of Community Safety and Violence Prevention, “which will have responsibility for public safety services prioritizing a holistic, public health-oriented approach,” a draft of the amendment said.The proposal adds that the director of the new agency would have “non-law-enforcement experience in community safety services, including but not limited to public health and/or restorative justice approaches.” It also suggests setting up a division of licensed peace officers, who would answer to the department’s director.“I certainly understand if somebody was to tell me they’re going to send a different type of officer for one type of call versus another, I certainly understand that, but it’s hard for me to envision a world complete with abolishment of police officers when that’s all I’ve known since I’ve been a child,” Stotts said. He noted that “there is still a long way to go in the legislative process … before they could possibly get to that state, but a unanimous vote speaks volumes.” MINNEAPOLIS NEIGHBORHOOD THAT VOWED NOT TO CALL POLICE IN WAKE OF FLOYD DEATH IS ALREADY BEING TESTED BY 300-STRONG HOMELESS ENCAMPMENTAlthough the amendment received a 12-0 vote from council members, it faces an uphill battle as it makes its way past a policy committee and to the city’s Charter Commission for a formal review, at which point citizens and city officials can also weigh in.If successful, the amendment will be put on the November ballot for a vote in the general election.The pressure to dismantle the Minneapolis Police Department mounted after the death of Floyd, an unarmed black man who died in police custody on May 25 after an officer kneeled on his neck for over eight minutes.Several Minneapolis City Council members who have reportedly received death threats following their calls to defund the police after Floyd’s death have been assigned private security details. The details reportedly cost the city $4,500 a day in taxpayer dollars.According to information obtained by Fox News, the city has spent $63,000 on private security over the last three weeks.Host Pete Hegseth asked White on Sunday, “Does it rub you the wrong way, the same City Council members who are voting to abolish the police have hired their own private security detail on taxpayer dollars to defend themselves?” “I think they have a hard job and I think that, whichever way they made a decision, whether it was a vote to abolish or not, I think we’re in a world right now where they have to be concerned for their safety and they’re taking the proper precautions,” she said in response. “Had they voted the opposite direction, would they have hired security for themselves also? Probably so.” CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPThe City Council did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment. Fox News’ Vandana Rambaran, Caitlin McFall and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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