Faith Group Calls on Sen. Limmer to Hold Police Accountability Hearings
Calls for new police accountability measures at the Minnesota Legislature were reignited with the police killing of Daunte Wright in Brooklyn Center, and now a group of faith leaders are making a plea to a Maple Grove lawmaker who has the power to help move the issue forward at the State Capitol.
“Our black and brown neighbors in Minnesota, across the state, remain in grave danger from police misconduct,” said Rev. Oby Ballinger, a member of the faith-based coalition, ISAIAH. “And our faiths call us here to tell Senator Warren Limmer to conduct these promised hearings right away. Transparently, and in public, now.”
Thursday morning, members of ISAIAH gathered in front of Maple Grove City Hall to call on State Senator Warren Limmer to hold hearings on police accountability. Limmer is the Republican chair of the Senate’s Judiciary and Public Safety Committee.
The faith leaders say that earlier this month, Republican Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka committed to hold public hearings on police reform. But Limmer, as the one person who can make it happen, hasn’t followed through.
“As a faith leader in his district, I am here to join my voice in calling on him to take immediate action on police accountability,” said Pastor Peter Schattauer of Advent Lutheran Church in Maple Grove. “It is the moral and faithful thing to do.”
ISAIAH calls on the legislature to pass the following bills:
- Limit Traffic Stops – to prevent a driver from being stopped for expired tabs, an air freshener hanging in the window, and other low-level offenses. This is a direct response to the reasons given for the traffic stop that led to the death of Daunte Wright. (HF 2529)
- Establish Civilian Police Oversight Councils – allowing local units of government to establish citizen oversight councils for law enforcement, ensuring that community members can both hold law enforcement accountable and have their voices heard in discussions of public safety. (HF 640)
- Improve Officer Accountability – building a more effective early warning intervention system to keep officers with a history of misconduct off the streets. (HF 1374)
- White Supremacy Ban – prohibiting law enforcement from affiliating with white supremacist groups. (HF 593)
- Mental health response – Directing 911 operators to refer calls to mental health crisis teams instead of armed officers, where appropriate and available. (HF 1686)
- Restrict No-Knock Warrants – Requiring a higher standard before no-knock warrants can be used (HF 1762)
- Body-Camera Video – prohibit the altering, erasing, or destroying recordings and withholding of footage involving the use of deadly force from the victim’s family. (HF 1103)
We interviewed Sen. Warren Limmer on Police Reform and the Budget for our Newsmakers segment. You can see that story here.