Some city employees avoided north Minneapolis Saturday ‘due to all the shootings’

When a Fourth Precinct officer requested a traffic control agent to respond to a call on Saturday night, a dispatcher told him they were not answering to that area due to gun violence.

Minneapolis police officers (Chad Davis/Flickr)

Gun violence in north Minneapolis last weekend hit a level high enough to make traffic control agents intentionally avoid the area.

Traffic agents were not responding to incidents in north Minneapolis on Saturday, even when they were requested by police officers, according to police dispatch audio.

As first reported by Crime Watch Minneapolis, a Fourth Precinct police officer requested a traffic control agent to respond to a call on Saturday night. The armed police officer would have been at the call when the traffic control agent arrived.

However, the officer was told by a dispatcher that traffic control agents were not responding “at all” to the north side.

“I got a hold of traffic control. They are not responding to the north side at all due to all the shootings and gun violence,” the dispatcher said.

“Wow” was the officer’s only response, according to the audio.

As pointed out by Crime Watch, a plan is currently underway to create an unarmed traffic safety division in Minneapolis, which would be “housed in a department outside of the Police Department.”

City Council Member Phillipe Cunningham’s plan seeks to “eliminate racial disparities in traffic enforcement” by having unarmed citizens conduct routine traffic stops. Traffic control agents currently enforce all non-moving violations and help police with emergency requests; Cunningham essentially wants to expand their role to include moving violations.

Sixty percent of fatal crashes in Minneapolis last year happened on the north side, where traffic control agents are currently unwilling to go due to gun violence, even when armed officers are present, Crime Watch reports.

There were 16 shooting victims in Minneapolis last weekend, most of the shots fired being in north Minneapolis. Three people were killed.

A mother who lives in Harrison, a north Minneapolis neighborhood, is just happy to see her kids alive, according to Fox 9.

A stray bullet shot through the window of her apartment Sunday and barely missed her young son.

“Now I have to deal with tossing and turning last night, holding my five-year-old son as he screamed and screamed and wouldn’t go to bed,” Courtney Bailey said.

According to a shots fired map from the city of Minneapolis, at least 25 shootings have taken place in the last seven days.

A well-known activist said she is telling parents in Minneapolis to have their children sleep on the floor to avoid being hit by stray bullets.

Minneapolis has experienced one of the largest homicide increases in the nation this year, a study recently found.