Kingfield Crime and Safety Meeting
Tuesday February 19
Kingfield Residents: 5 (including CM Elizabeth Glidden)
MLK Park Staff: None
MPD- Lt Marie Przynski, CPS Tom Thompson Fifth Precinct Community Attorney: Lisa Goden and Lisa Johnson Crime and Safety Task Force Board Representative: None
KFNA Staff- Joanna S. Hallstrom, Project Organizer
CPS Thompson will email out the date for a citizen Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) workshop.
Next week the police department will be conducting a traffic calming focus in Lyndale. Drive slowly. Open Forum Issues of Concern: Residents were concerned about the drive by shooting on 35W at 35th Street on Sunday. Lt reported that this case has been handed over to the 3rd Precinct since it happened on the East side of 35W. It does not appear random.
Neighborhood Crime Reports: Lt. Przynski and CPS Thompson reported that there is an overall decline in crime states for the 5th Precinct except for a spike in robberies. There has been an arrest made. Last week in KFNA there was one burglary and one car theft.
Part 1 crimes most often are reported on a Monday. The most common time of day for crime to happen (does not correlate with the day) is 10pm-12am. Part 2 crimes most often happen on a Thursday, Tuesday or Wednesday and the most common time (again not associated with a particular day) is between 12am-2am.
Crime Prevention and Safety Strategies: 1. Lt Przynski confirmed Wednesday, April 2 for the citizen training on gangs in Minneapolis. This training will be offered precinct wide. It will be held at the 5th Precinct Office at 6:30 in the community room.
2. “Judicial Revolving Door” forum proposed by West-of-King block clubs: The group discussed the goals of such a forum, the desired outcomes and who could be on the panel. The purpose of the forum is to educate residents on the criminal court system and how they and their representatives can be more involved in reforms. The impetus for this form is resident frustration over the cycle of chronic offenders continually released back to the streets to offend again. (One of the persons involved in the MLK assault/kidnapping has been arrested 79 times already).
The groups discussed having one to three forums that would include attorneys, judges, police and City representatives. It was felt that three meetings would not be a good idea and probably poorly attended. One possibly two focused sessions would be more effective. The session/s should include an overview of the judicial system and what happens after court (probation, treatment etc.).
Michael Vanderford, organizer of West-of-King and Rosie Novak one of their block leaders will take back information and suggestions from the CPaS discussion to their group for further discussion. Hallstrom is willing to support/help with organizing such a forum once the West-of-King group decides on the direction and format that they want.
3. Jack Baker Letter Re: Eradicate graffiti with Senate File 0587: KFNA received a copy of a letter to Mayor R.T. Ryback written by Jack Baker on behind of the Graffiti Task Force (GTF) of the Lyndale Neighborhood. In summary the letter advocates for “graffiti offense to be charged as a petty misdemeanor.” This allows a “police offers that is not an eye witnesses to present credible evidence in an informal hearing to identify the individual responsible for graffiti.” “ A lowered standard of proof is allowed for petty misdemeanors because the state law required the sentence to be a fine, with no threat of incarceration.” “Graffiti cases where there is an eye witness would continue to be prosecuted in a criminal court . . .”
Hallstrom contacted the 8th Ward office to see what Glidden’s stance was on this letter. Glidden offered to talk to CPaS tonight to share her thoughts. First, Glidden made it clear that she supports the goal of Lyndale to eradicate graffiti but has concerns about this approach. Glidden has asked for a formal response from the City Attorney’s office, this will be shared with neighborhoods. Glidden’s concerns are as follows:
The recommendation to reduce penalty (petty misdemeanor) verses a stronger more consistent penalty is contrary to overall goals. It is moving backwards.
She is also concerned about legislating who can and cannot be an expert witness. This policy change would allow police officers as a group to be “expert witnesses.” It is unclear if the legislator should be involved in deciding this and although this may be a benefit for graffiti crack down it may play out differently in other scenarios.
This bill needs a house author. This GTF has been asked Neva Walker to be the author. CPaS will wait until the City Attorney sends out their review before considering making a recommendation to the KFNA board to support/oppose Senate File 0587.
4. Court Watch Program: Lisa Goden reported that she has received a number of great Community Impact Statements from KFNA residents for the Mark Loesch cases, the MLK assault/kidnapping and for the individual charged with check forgery living near 39th and 1st that is also a known gang member. Receiving CIS from residents has been very encouraging for the Court Watch program. Lisa will keep CPaS posted on the progress of each case. Residents are encouraged/invited to sit in on the trials if they would like to. Hallstrom will continue to request more CISs from KFNA residents. Specifically, there is time to collect more for the Mark Loesch cases since trial dates are in May and July.
Minutes completed by Joanna Hallstrom, Project Organizer – KFNA