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Mayor, police chief hit streets after violent weekend in Minneapolis


Following a violent weekend in Minneapolis that left two people dead, Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau and Mayor Betsy Hodges walked the streets of north Minneapolis Tuesday to call attention to crime-fighting efforts, FOX 9 reports.

"The violence in North Minneapolis must stop," said Mayor Hodges, who met with leaders on the north side, according to WCCO. “We need to pull out every stop we can to end it as quickly as possible.”

Two people were killed and at least three more injured after three separate shootings in north Minneapolis Friday night and Saturday morning. Two people were also stabbed early Sunday.

According to FOX 9, Harteau said the city has put more officers in the violent areas of north Minneapolis, which has led to more gun seizures.

Shooting calls in the 4th precinct have risen about 36 percent compared to last year, the chief said, and officers there have seized 258 guns -- compared to 192 in all of last year.

'Too many people are using guns to resolve conflicts," Harteau said, according to FOX 9. “This is something that is not going to stop even if I have a cop on every corner.”

Minneapolis City Council President Barb Johnson Tuesday called on judges in Hennepin County to treat gun crimes more seriously.

"This is intolerable in our community," Johnson said. "There are hard-working people that live in north Minneapolis that do not deserve to have their neighborhood overrun with thugs with guns, and I'm tired of it." (Video: FOX 9)

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Johnson said she has met privately with judges twice to express her concerns, and felt it necessary now to go public. She said she is not accusing the judges of not doing their jobs, but said they should use the discretion they have to keep criminals with guns in custody and off the streets.

"These people doing the shooting are well known in our criminal justice system," Johnson said. "Hold them accountable."

Harteau says violence is a community problem as much as it is a police problem, and she is hoping to get the community involved to help end the violence, WCCO reports.

One community leader, MAD DADS President VJ Smith, implores that community involvement is a must, KARE 11 says.

"If it's not happening in your community, people say, 'Well, that's three blocks down the street.' Well, you need to get your butt up and do something because the next victim just might be you," Smith told KARE.

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Officials say 16 people have been killed in Minneapolis this year, and at least 11 of those slayings have been on the city's north side.

In this weekend's incidents, Cabrie D. Young, 28, of Minneapolis, died in a shooting in the 3400 block of Dupont Avenue N. about 10 minutes to midnight on July 4, and two others were injured, authorities say. Five hours later, Francesca M. DeSandre, 24, of Minneapolis, was shot and killed in the 2600 block of N. 3rd St. while another person was injured.

The Star Tribune says aggravated assaults are up 9 percent over last year and 17 percent in north Minneapolis.

“Too much liquor, too many drugs in people’s systems and some unknown stuff that we don’t even know what the heck is going on at 2, 3 in the morning,” Smith told the newspaper.

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