MINNEAPOLIS — Former Minneapolis police chief Janeé Harteau shared a letter on Twitter that she says is from the police union president, expressing support for the officers involved in George Floyd's death.
In the letter, which appears to be addressed to members of the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis, union president Bob Kroll says, "I've worked with the four defense attorneys that are representing each of our four terminated individuals under criminal investigation, in addition with our labor attorney's to fight for their jobs. They were terminated without due process." He does not reference the four officers by name.
Harteau posted Kroll's letter on Twitter, calling on him to turn in his badge.
"This is the battle that myself and others have been fighting against," she wrote.
Following Floyd's death on May 25, the Federation released the following statement:
"Now is not the time rush to judgement and immediately condemn our officers. An in-depth investigation is underway. Our officers are fully cooperating. We must review all video. We must wait for the medical examiner’s report. Officers’ actions and training protocol will be carefully examined after the officers have provided their statements. The Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis will provide full support to the involved officers. We ask that the community remain calm and let the investigation be completed in full."
In the latest letter, Kroll says he's been out of the public eye to protect the safety of officers, and that he's been a "visible target" and received death threats.
Kroll is also critical of state and local leaders, writing, "the politicians are to blame and you are the scapegoats."
Last year, Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo made his case to the City Council's Public Safety Committee for hiring 400 more officers by 2025, an addition that would bring the department up from 600 officers to 1,000.
The 2020 city budget included millions for violence prevent programs in the city and added some more officers, but not the total number requested by Chief Arrandondo.
In his statement, Kroll writes that not getting those 400 officers "is what led to this record breaking riot."