On June 5 The City of Minneapolis and the Minnesota Department of Human Rights signed a Stipulation and Order mandating certain changes for conduct of the City’s police. Most prominent were a ban on the use of choke holds and neck restraints and requiring officers to intervene when inappropriate force is used. The agreement was in the form of a Stipulation and Order for approval of the Hennepin County District Court.
On June 8 that approval was granted by Hennepin County District Judge Karen Janisch. That approval was in the form of a court order for the Minneapolis Police Department immediately to implement the following measures
- Ban the use of all neck restraints and chokeholds.
- Any police officer, regardless of tenure or rank, must report while still on scene if they observe another police officer use any unauthorized use of force, including any chokehold or neck restraint.
- Any police officer, regardless of tenure or rank, must intervene by verbal and physical means if they observe another police officer use any unauthorized use of force, including any choke hold or neck restraint.
- Only the Police Chief or the Chief’s designee at the rank of Deputy Chief may approve the use of crowd control weapons, including chemical agents, rubber bullets, flash-bangs, batons, and marking rounds, during protests and demonstrations.
- The Police Chief must make timely and transparent discipline decisions for police officers as outlined in the order.
- Civilian body worn camera footage analysts and investigators in the City’s Office of Police Conduct Review have the authority to proactively audit body worn camera footage and file or amend complaints on behalf of the Minneapolis Civil Rights Department.
As a result, the court has the power to enforce compliance with these measures and failure to do so could lead to court-imposed sanctions.
According to Minnesota Commissioner of Human Rights Rebecca Lucero, “Today’s court order will create immediate change for communities of color and Indigenous communities who have suffered generational pain and trauma as a result of systemic and institutional racism and long-standing problems in policing.”
Judge Janisch was appointed to the bench in 2009 by Governor Tim Pawlenty (Rep). and was elected to that position in 2010 and 2016. She obtained her J.D. magna cum laude from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1992 and was a Minnesota Supreme Court law clerk, 1992-93, an associate and partner in a Minneapolis law firm, 1993-2003 and General Counsel to Governor Pawlenty, 2003-2009.
 Ban on Police Choke Holds and Neck Restraints in Agreement Between City of Minneapolis and Minnesota Human Rights Department, dwkcomentaries.com (June 6, 2020.)
 Press release, Court Orders Minneapolis Police Department to Make Immediate Changes, Minn. Dep’t Human Rts. (June 8, 2020); Griswold, Court orders Minneapolis Police Department to implement immediate changes, KARE11 News (June 8, 2020).
 Stipulation and Order, State of Minnesota v. City of Minneapolis Police Department, City of Minneapolis, Ct. file # 27-CV-20-8182 (Henn. Cty. Dist. Ct. June 8, 2020).
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