Insight News

Sunday
Sep 21st

MPD uses demotions to achieve diversity?

E-mail Print PDF

MPD uses demotions to achieve diversity?

By Dwight Hobbes, Columnist

The Minneapolis Police Department is in the process of having its head handed to it. On a platter.
Five veterans officers, Sgt. Charles Adams, Lt. Medaria Arradondo, Lt. Lee Edwards, Lt. Don Harris and Sgt. Dennis Hamilton are suing the MPD and Chief Tim Dolan on grounds of the MPD perpetrating systemic discrimination and sustaining a labor environment hostile to African Americans.
The Minneapolis Police Department is in the process of having its head handed to it. On a platter.

Five veteran officers, Sgt. Charles Adams, Lt. Medaria Arradondo, Lt. Lee Edwards, Lt. Don Harris and Sgt. Dennis Hamilton, are suing the MPD and Chief Tim Dolan on grounds of the MPD perpetrating systemic discrimination and sustaining a labor environment hostile to African Americans. And there isn't a snowball's chance of any judge throwing this out as a nuisance suit.

Lt. Arradondo asserts that, right after taking charge, Chief Dolan demoted him from commanding STOP (Strategic Tactical Operations) to being support for the Community Response Team. Lt. Harris contends that Chief Dolan reduced him from Deputy Chief to lieutenant. Sgt. Charles Adams, well reputed as a top MPD homicide detective, has been all over the news behind his recent reassignment for not co-signing a supervisor's (Lt. Amelia Huffman) shaky account of details in the murder of Mark Loesch in South Minneapolis.

These individuals have been around the political block in Minneapolis (Adams was on former Mayor Sharon Sayles Belton's security team) long enough to know full well you don't pull the trigger on something like this unless you have both barrels loaded. So you can believe they will back their claims up to the hilt. In addition, Sgt. Adams hasn't been disciplined in his entire career on the force, and even the Minneapolis Police Officer Federation has weighed in to file a grievance on Adams' behalf. With even MPOF head Lt. John Delmonico siding against the department, since he's never been known to especially respect Black folk (ask City Council Member Ralph Remington and look back on Lt. Delmonico's blood-thirsty railings against former Council Member Natalie Johnson Lee), you can bet that this particular fish - leadership at the MPD - truly rots from the head down.

It's a federal suit, by the way, that doesn't just put these officers' concerns on the table, but charges the City of Minneapolis with a long history of discrimination against African American cops and states that racist goings-on are increasingly institutionalized in the wake of Dolan becoming chief. Bet the ranch that Mayor R.T. Rybak, who jerked former Chief Bill McManus around about a new contract, then scrambled like a cat scratching on a glass floor to keep McManus from bolting to San Antonio, profoundly rues the mess Dolan has put Minneapolis in the middle of.

The mayor and City Council President Barbara Johnson told the media that they take discrimination charges seriously.

And then, out of the other side of their mouths, said that they "are confident in Chief Dolan's ability to lead the police department and his efforts to diversify."

Yeah, right. Diversifying by demotion. Makes a world of sense, doesn't it? If Mayor Rybak's administration was a lot less about politically correct bells and whistles and even a little more about serving everyone as well as it does white suburbanites, probably none of this would've ever been necessary in the first place. But it is. And none of it is going away merely on the strength of cosmetic, damage control platitudes. The MPD has stepped in some serious sugar-honey-iced-tea. And has dragged the city's feet right along in tow.

How many officers on the force of whatever color or sexual orientation may join Adams, Arradondo, Edwards, Harris and Hamilton in this legal action or take separate action remains to be seen. It shouldn't surprise anyone, though, if this opens a floodgate. At last, the Minneapolis Police Department finds itself in the wrong showdown. About damned time.


 

Recent Comments

Powered by Disqus



Facebook Twitter RSS Image Map

Latest show

  • September 9, 2014
    Family and ancestry. Andrew Scott, Bobby Sykes, Floyd Brown, Sharon L. Sykes and Kenya McKnight.

Business & Community Service Network