U of M to temporarily increase police presence after weekend violence

Senior Vice President Myron Frans said the new “Operation Gopher Guardian” initiative will run for the next two weekends.

A surveillance video surfaced on Twitter Monday that showed a group outside the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity house on the 1600 block of University Avenue Southeast. (Twitter)

The University of Minnesota plans to temporarily increase police presence near campus following a string of violent attacks over the weekend, according to a letter sent Wednesday by university leadership.

Senior Vice President Myron Frans said the new “Operation Gopher Guardian” initiative will run for the next two weekends and “enlist up to 10 additional officers from UMPD and MPD.”

“These officers will provide enhanced public safety protection to Minneapolis residents and our University of Minnesota community,” he said. “Operation Gopher Guardian will consist of overtime MPD officers, paid for by the University, and increased overtime from UMPD officers in addition to the normal force of officers on duty on campus on any Friday or Saturday evening.”

The letter made no mention of last weekend’s violence, which saw multiple students severely injured after frat houses were targeted with fireworks.

“I spent 8 hours in the ER where pieces of debris had to be cut out of my wounds. I am sick that the university is not giving this incident the attention it deserves,” one victim told Crime Watch Minneapolis.

In his letter to students and staff, Frans said the “safety of our community” remains “a top priority for this administration.”

“This short-term initiative provides additional focused attention to specific areas near campus, and is designed to enhance safety and be responsive to the needs of our University community,” he said.

According to Crime Watch Minneapolis, some of the suspects in the attacks threatened to assault or kill people at the fraternities. Surveillance video captured one of the incidents, which appeared to show a man holding a machete outside a frat house.

 

Anthony Gockowski

Anthony Gockowski is Editor-in-Chief of Alpha News. He previously worked as an editor for The Minnesota Sun and Campus Reform, and reported for The Daily Caller.