Publish date:

Minneapolis police to halt low-level marijuana stings at mayor's request

The decision was directed by Mayor Jacob Frey after downtown sting operations overwhelmingly targeted black suspects.

Minneapolis police officers will no longer carry out undercover sting operations for low-level marijuana offenses, with police chief Medaria Arradondo calling a halt at the request of Mayor Jacob Frey.

Police Chief Medaria Arradondo made the announcement at a press conference on Thursday, which follows concerns over racial profiling in the results of a recent report.

The report found that of 47 people arrested in sting operations for possessing and selling small amounts of marijuana between Jan. 24 and May 24 in downtown Minneapolis, 46 of them were black.

"Mayor Frey has directed us ... we will discontinue specific low-level marijuana enforcement, and I agree with the mayor's decision," Arradondo said.

Arradondo said the arrests had been made as part of crime reduction efforts in downtown Minneapolis, and that "while the intention was good, it had an unintended consequence."

But while the findings were from a downtown exercise, the moratorium on low-level marijuana stings applies to the entire city.

Today's Top Stories

– Red-hot Rosario launches 3-run homer, shows off his rocket arm.

– Minnesota's graduation rates do not make for pleasant reading.

– Sign up for our daily newsletters.

Arradondo says he wants to see fewer black males entering the criminal justice system and work with stakeholders to offer "other potential alternatives" including treatment, counseling and diversion.

"The goal here is to keep our community safe but the goal is also we want to contribute to the hope that so many in our community, especially African American males, are not experiencing at this time."

The Star Tribune reports that the low-level marijuana arrests related to the sale of only 1-2 grams of the drug, at a value of between $10-$20.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2021-10-15 at 10.01.55 PM

Police still searching for suspect who opened fire at Plymouth movie theater

It sparked a partial evacuation of the Emagine Willow Creek theater.

covid, vaccine

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Monday, October 18

Hospitalizations have surpassed 1,000 in the latest update.

Gully Boys van stolen Twitter pic 1

Mpls. band Gully Boys' van stolen, with all their gear inside

They're asking Twin Cities residents to be on the lookout for the silver van.

ATV, all-terrain vehicle

2 girls from St. Cloud injured in ATV crash

Neither girl was wearing a helmet, the sheriff's office said.

Kirk Cousins

Kirk Cousins has turned into a late-game killer for the Vikings

Cousins has given the Vikings a chance to tie or win the game 7 times in 6 games.

john oliver

Watch: The absurd ad 'Last Week Tonight' wrote for a MN car dealership

Host John Oliver described the commercial as a "tense domestic psychodrama."

Car driving

Minnesota is on track for the most road deaths since 2007

Minnesota has recorded 384 traffic deaths as of Oct. 14.


1 dead, 1 airlifted following Goodhue County crash

The crash happened around 6:15 a.m. Sunday.

railroad crossing, train crossing

Woman found dead on train tracks in Moorhead

The woman was located by officials on train tracks near Memorial Park Sunday morning.

police tape, crime scene

Search for killer after man is fatally shot in Hopkins

The shooting was reported around 7:40 p.m. Sunday.


Medaria Arradondo set for 3 more years as Minneapolis police chief

Mayor Jacob Frey intends to reappoint him to the position.

Screen Shot 2020-08-26 at 9.41.40 PM

Mayor Frey implements immediate curfew in Minneapolis, requests National Guard

It comes amid misinformation about a suicide led to property damage and looting downtown.

Screen Shot 2019-08-15 at 1.19.47 PM

Mayor Frey proposes to scrap cash bail for low-level crimes

He's proposing an alternative plan to get defendants to court.

Screen Shot 2019-08-15 at 1.19.47 PM

Amid protests, Mayor Jacob Frey announces increase in police officers

The Minneapolis mayor announced his 2019-20 budget on Thursday.

St. Paul mayor turns down police request for 50 more officers

Melvin Carter made his statement on Facebook Friday.

Minneapolis announces independent review of police-ketamine report

A leaked draft report revealed some officers had urged medical responders to drug people.

Jacob Frey

Minneapolis mayor reveals his plan for policing changes

Mayor Jacob Frey announced a slate of new policy proposals at an event in north Minneapolis Monday.