Minneapolis To Pay $35 Million To Cops Who Left Force Amid George Floyd Unrest
Minneapolis police officers who quit amid the civil unrest following George Floyd’s murder are set to receive $35 million.
With the involvement of law enforcement, some events led to violence and rioting, and a large number of officers left the force as a result.
In addition to clashes between officers, protesters and rioters, the police’s third precinct was burned down. Branden Michael Wolfe, 23, was recently sentenced to 41 months in prison for his role in the arson, in addition to stealing a number of police items like handcuffs and a baton, knife, pistol magazine and other ammunition.
Ron Meuser, a lawyer representing the former officers, is currently working with City Hall on establishing the weight of their compensation packages, which must be approved by the council. One package is said to equal a payout of $250,000, however the average settlement will total around $175,000.
Meuser said: ‘I think they felt for a long, long time that the community doesn’t want them, doesn’t respect them and doesn’t care about them.’
Amid widespread calls to defund police departments nationwide, with hopes it’ll help force reform from within, the compensation packages attracted criticism. Council member Phillipe Cunningham wrote in an email: ‘Why are Black lives in north Minneapolis not being prioritised urgently?’
However, Mayor Jacob Frey hit back in his reply, calling out his ‘absolute lack of support for adequate police staffing levels [which] have detracted from the essential work at great cost to the city of Minneapolis.’
This comes after former officer Derek Chauvin was found guilty of murdering Floyd last year, with three other officers facing trial on charges of aiding and abetting manslaughter.
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