Report: Sanitation worker outed as 4th Precinct tipster killed himself after firing

Fearing for his co-workers' safety, Al Ditty tipped off the media about an impending raid on the 4th Precinct protest.

After sending a tip to a local TV station led to his termination, a Minneapolis sanitation worker reportedly took his own life.

The information in question? A impending removal of Jamar Clark protesters outside the city's Fourth Precinct Police Station.

That's the story being reported on Wednesday by City Pages, which has printed an in-depth feature into the life and death of 54-year-old Al Ditty.

Ditty was one of the sanitation workers told they'd be involved in a clear-up operation of the Fourth Precinct protest site. Fearing for the safety of his co-workers and worried about the impact their involvement would have on the north Minneapolis community, he emailed KARE 11 a tip about the upcoming raid.

The raid was called off when the city realized KARE knew about it. Ditty was suspended from his job with the city shortly after the email he sent to KARE was forwarded to the police. (KARE is investigating how this happened, City Pages notes.)

He was later fired after 32 years with the city, with the public works department saying he had "jeopardized public safety and the safety of city employees." He was three years from qualifying from his full pension.

He took his life by hanging himself on March 12.

You can read the full City Pages report here. Neither the city or police gave a comment to the magazine, citing confidentiality rules.

The Fourth Precinct protest

From Nov. 15-Dec. 3, 2015, demonstrators occupied the Fourth Precinct in north Minneapolis, demanding officers involved in the shooting of Clark be held accountable, and video of the incident be released.

The protests cost the city roughly $1.15 million, with the majority of expenses related to police overtime, the report says, while no serious injuries between officers and demonstrators were reported.

In March, the Department of Justice said that while the city and police responses to the protest were "peaceful" and "measured," poor communication from city leaders led to "inconsistent messaging, confusion and ineffective communication that negatively affected the response."

Next Up