The Potluck

Assistant chief Huffman assigned to work on coming consent decree

By: - March 20, 2023 2:36 pm

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey and incoming Interim Police Chief Amelia Huffman vow to address violent crime through boosted enforcement and new officer recruitment at a news conference on Jan. 5, 2021. Photo by Max Nesterak/Minnesota Reformer.

The former interim Minneapolis police chief has a new assignment: working with the city attorney’s office on pending consent decrees with the state and federal government. 

Beginning last month, Assistant Chief Amelia Huffman was “embedded” in the City Attorney’s Office, working primarily on “implementation work” associated with the pending legal agreements between the city and state and federal governments, according to an internal city email. 

The U.S. Department of Justice is investigating the Minneapolis Police Department for racist policing, and the state Department of Human Rights is negotiating a consent decree after finding the department engaged in a pattern or practice of race discrimination. The DOJ will settle the case with an order enforced by a federal court — a consent decree — negotiated by the DOJ and city. 

City Attorney Kristyn Anderson announced the change in an internal email to city leadership, writing, “I could not be more grateful to Amelia for continuing to shape the reform framework being developed and to Chief (Brian) O’Hara for his collaboration in making the transition as smooth as possible. These agreements will have an enterprise-wide impact, and I’m thrilled to see the City continue to leverage top talent to take on the challenges ahead.”

Huffman temporarily filled in as chief in December 2021 after former Chief Medaria Arradondo retired after three decades of public service. She pushed to hire dozens of police officers and partner with other agencies — including the state — to fight crime. But her tenure was quickly overshadowed by the February 2022 police killing of Amir Locke, 22, after a no-knock warrant in search of another person.


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Deena Winter
Deena Winter

Deena Winter has covered local and state government in four states over the past three decades, with stints at the Bismarck Tribune in North Dakota, as a correspondent for the Denver Post, city hall reporter in Lincoln, Nebraska, and regional editor for Southwest News in the western Minneapolis suburbs.