Judge rejects ballot measure to replace Minneapolis Police Department

Demonstrators hold a sign in Los Angeles on June 14 for Breonna Taylor, a black woman who was shot by police in her home while she was sleeping. Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | License Photo

Sept. 7 (UPI) -- A Minnesota judge on Tuesday rejected the language on a ballot measure that would replace the Minneapolis Police Department.

Hennepin County District Judge Jamie Anderson said the wording of the ballot question was unacceptable just ahead of the printing of the ballots.


"The court finds that the current ballot language is vague, ambiguous and incapable of implementation, and is insufficient to identify the amendment clearly. It's unreasonable and misleading," Anderson wrote in the order.

The Minneapolis City Council in December voted to shift $7.7 million away from the MPD after calls for reforms in the wake of the police shooting of George Floyd. Former officer Derek Chauvin was convicted of murdering Floyd after kneeling on his neck for several minutes during an arrest in May 2020.

The council last month also approved a proposed amendment to the city charter that would replace the police force with a Department of Public Safety. Mayor Jacob Frey, who opposes the potential change, said the new agency's mandate is largely undefined.

Supporters of the Department of Public Safety said the change to the city charter would allow the City Council to require more accountability.


The council was expected to hold a meeting Tuesday to work on new language for the ballot measure.

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