The public comment period is now open for the Minneapolis City Council's proposed charter amendment that would replace the Minneapolis Police Department. The amendment establishes a new Department of Community Safety and Violence Prevention, and removes the references to "police department" in the city charter. The charter amendment is on a path that would eventually bring it to a public vote on the November ballot. The city council voted unanimously on Friday to advance the proposal as a ballot measure. The council says the new public safety department would focus on a "holistic, public-health oriented approach," although it would still allow for a "law enforcement services" division that would include licensed peace officers.
Gov. Tim Walz held a news conference to announce a COVID-19 “testing milestone” on Monday. Walz said the state now has the capacity to test 20,000 Minnesotans per day, a "moonshot" testing goal that the governor has been talking about for months. Walz referenced the initiative that the state, the University of Minnesota and the Mayo Clinic announced in late April. “It put us in a position to be able to have an accurate representation” of the virus’ spread in Minnesota, Walz said. He said the testing initiative has also allowed them to build up contact tracing after identifying positive COVID-19 cases. Walz emphasized that testing does not create more COVID-19 positivity, but more cases are identified when testing rates go up. To develop an accurate picture of the state of COVID-19 in Minnesota, he said his team looks at positivity rates day to day.
Minneapolis Police are investigating what they're calling a "suspicious death" after a male victim was found in a downtown apartment. Just before 8 p.m. on Monday, officers responded to an apartment at 15 East Grant Street for a welfare check. At the apartment they found the victim's body. According to police, evidence found at the scene led investigators to believe the death "is possibly a result of foul play." Circumstances around the victim's death are still being investigated. The Medical Examiner's Office will release the identity of the victim, including nature and cause of death, in the coming days. Anyone with information on this incident should call CrimeStoppers of Minnesota at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or submit a tip electronically at www.CrimeStoppersMN.org.