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Minneapolis fire chief told of 3rd Precinct blaze by CNN's Don Lemon

Mayor Jacob Frey is also coming in for criticism for appearing on MSNBC.
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Minneapolis Fire Chief John Fruetel was not aware that the 3rd Police Precinct was on fire until he was told so by CNN host Don Lemon.

Fruetel was told about the situation at the south Minneapolis facility while calling in to CNN on Thursday evening.

"The department is on fire," Lemon said.

"Yes, that's very possible," Fruetel replied, before saying: "I apologize, I just came from another fire, you have the advantage of real-time and I'm not seeing that, so if that is the case then they have made entry into the building and obviously the building is on fire."

There have been multiple fires set for the second night in a row in the area around the 3rd Precinct, with Minnehaha Liquor and the Max-It Pawn Shop among the others that went up in smoke.

Coming in for criticism on Thursday evening is Mayor Jacob Frey, who hasn't made any public statement or appeared at any of the protest scenes, but did however make an appearance on MSNBC with Rachel Maddow.

He finally issued a public statement shortly after midnight.

It comes amid wider calls for Twin Cities, police, and state leaders to step forward in an attempt to calm the increasingly volatile situation.

KARE 11's Julie Nelson made an appeal for Frey, Mayor Melvin Carter, or Gov. Tim Walz to call in to speak to a local outlet, which Carter later did.

Frey was criticized by President Donald Trump, with whom he has had a run-in before, as "very weak," with the president saying he is offering to send the military in and is in contact with Gov. Tim Walz.

"Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts," he says.

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