Following the RNC protests, two Minneapolis City Council members have called for an investigation into police tactics used at the RNC. One of the council members previously critized the Ramsey County Sheriff’s office for a series of raids conducted on the Friday and Saturday before the protests.
Minneapolis Council Members Cam Gordon and Gary Schiff Call for Independent Investigation of RNC-Related Law Enforcement Actions
Throughout the Republican National Convention we have seen and heard a number of disturbing reports of actions taken by law enforcement, including the Minneapolis Police Department personnel, against journalists, observers, medics, bystanders, people engaged in peaceful protest and others.
We have also heard stories of patience and flexibility on the part of many law enforcement personnel. We thank and commend law enforcement for the service they provide and the many instances in the past few days where police as well as protesters have shown restraint and the ability to engage in healthy civic protest without incident.
Now that the convention is over, we join others calling for an independent, blue ribbon panel to conduct a thorough investigation into the events, decisions and policies surrounding security issues and the RNC, hold hearings and make recommendations for future policy changes.
The recent reports of law enforcement targeting observers and reporters, engaging in preemptive raids and questionable uses of force show a troubling pattern that is not consistent with our hopes for showing the world how our Cities respect the right to civic debate and are committed to preserving free speech during the 2008 Republican National Convention.
We believe that the health of our democracy depends [on] the ability of a free press to function and understand how our government’s actions encouraged or discouraged people to participate in political speech. While violence and property damage by protesters or others should not be tolerated we also know that safety should not be used [as] an excuse to limit a free press or stifle free speech.
Council Member, Second Ward
Council Member, Ninth Ward
Law enforcement officials in the Twin Cities have repeatedly justified their conduct as being appropriate for the “threats” that they faced and have said that if anything, they used “restraint.”