Minneapolis police chief to reach out to community after racial incidents come to light

Kia Farhang

The Minneapolis Police Department’s chief on Friday said she’ll be talking to religious and cultural leaders in the coming weeks after two separate racial incidents involving white officers came to light.

In a statement, Janee Harteau said she wouldn’t tolerate racism or discrimination in the department.

Police misconduct, the statement said, “does major damage to the progress we have made to build public trust.”

Harteau said in the statement she will work with the city’s Civil Rights Director to begin a dialogue on rebuilding trust with Minneapolis communities.

The department placed two officers on administrative leave to investigate charges they used racial slurs while talking to police in Green Bay, Wis. in June.

The Minneapolis officers, who were off-duty at the time, also allegedly disparaged Harteau, who is the city’s first openly gay police chief.

Three other officers were cited for assault in Apple Valley, Minn. last year. They were allegedly part of a group that followed a group of black men into a parking lot and beat one of them.