Bob Kroll is re-elected as the head of Minneapolis police union

The Police Federation head is a steadfast defender of rank-and-file police, but has courted criticism for his controversial views.
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Lt. Bob Kroll, the controversial head of the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis who in the past year has had run-ins with Chief Janee Harteau and Mayor Betsy Hodges, has been re-elected to his post.

The Star Tribune reports that he received around 200 more votes out of around 600 cast than his opponent, Cory Fitch, when the final tally was announced at union headquarters Thursday afternoon.

It means he'll continue in the post he first won in 2015, since he has been seen as a defender of rank-and-file police officers at a time when high-profile police shootings have placed officer conduct under the microscope.

In a statement on the Minneapolis police Facebook page, Police Chief Harteau said the pair don't always agree, but singled out a few areas they have worked on to a positive outcome.

Kroll has courted headlines over the past couple years with some eyebrow-raising comments and views.

In June 2016, after a report was released into the conduct of police officers at the 4th Precinct protest at the death of Jamar Clark, Kroll referred to Black Lives Matter as a "terrorist organization" and was critical of Mayor Hodges and several city council members, as WCCO reported.

A month later, Mayor Hodges called him a "jackass" after he "commended" a decision of four off-duty city officers to walk off security detail at a Minnesota Lynx game in response to the team's support for BLM, CityPages reported.

Harteau told Kroll to stop wearing Minneapolis police uniforms in interviews following his comments.

And in July last year, the Star Tribune reported an investigation was opened after Kroll allegedly offered a steak dinner for the arrest of vandals who defaced union headquarters, which apparently violated the departments code of conduct.

Officer safety is his major concern, and it's exemplified in his response to an apology made for the historical mistreatment of minorities by the International Association of Chiefs of Police Terrence Cunningham last year.

According to WCCO, Kroll said the policing profession is "under attack right now and what we don’t need is chiefs like him perpetuating that we are all bad guys in law enforcement."

"I think it’s an asinine statement. … We’ve got officers dying on almost a daily basis now because of this environment, and statements like that don’t help."

Citypages delved a little more into his policing past in this article.

Kroll joined the MPD in 1989 and spent 15 years with the city's SWAT team. He was elected as Vice-President of the Police Federation in 2006.

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