In addition to low morale, staffing shortages and high crime, Minneapolis police officers are now dealing with environmental threats.
The Minneapolis Police Department’s Third Precinct, which was relocated after being destroyed by rioters in 2020, now has a possible mold problem. The precinct had found a temporary location in a city-owned building downtown, the City of Lakes Building, but may be forced to move again.
Officers in the 1950s-era structure at Second Avenue and Third Street began experiencing symptoms such as red faces and other allergic reactions last week.
Although the move downtown was supposed to be temporary, the precinct has been located there for more than a year.
One officer said “most of the people in the Third Precinct submitted Injured on Duty (IOD) paperwork last week,” in case they experience health issues in the future.
“The City of Minneapolis takes air quality issues seriously and is following its established protocol for assessment, testing and remediation, if needed,” according to Casper Hill, media relations coordinator for the City of Minneapolis.
Commander Chris Granger alerted Third Precinct officers to the issue in an email last Tuesday.
“It has been brought to the attention of MPD, Risk Management and Property Services that there is a potential mold issue at Precinct 3,” he said. “A meeting was held today and a plan of action implemented.”
He said the department contracted with an “industrial hygienist” to conduct “further sampling and testing as soon as possible.”
This comes after the Fourth Precinct building was struck by a barrage of bullets a few weeks ago when gunfire erupted near their building.
At this time, it is unclear if the building was targeted.
Alpha News reported that officers heard multiple shots being fired in the area of the precinct.
“Some officers [heard] bullets whiz by their heads, yet they advanced towards the sound of the gunfire,” said union president Sherral Schmidt. “Officers were able to apprehend several suspects who endangered the lives of many and terrorized a neighborhood by recklessly shooting at unknown targets.”
According to police, three men have been arrested in connection to the shootout near Minneapolis’ Fourth Precinct. Crime Watch reported “100 shots” were fired.
In late July, a driver traveling at a high rate of speed crashed into the jersey barrier surrounding the Fifth Precinct. It’s unclear whether or not injuries were suffered as a result of the crash.
Alpha News reached out to the Minneapolis Police Department for more information on the crash and did not hear back.