Minneapolis residents 'begging' for outside police to help amid crime surge? The truth behind Sean Hannity's claim
Talk show host Sean Hannity has reported that people in Minneapolis are scared amid the crime surge in the state and are reportedly turning to “outside police” to respond to emergencies as the city faces with a shortage of officers after the council voted to “defund” the department. Hannity, a conservative political commentator tweeted about the update on November 10. He wrote, “ ‘HELP US’: Minneapolis Residents Turn to ‘Outside Police’ Amid Violent Crime Surge, Cop Shortage”. He also added the link that mentions the full report and leads to his personal news website.
‘HELP US’: Minneapolis Residents Turn to ‘Outside Police’ Amid Violent Crime Surge, Cop Shortage https://t.co/mLsxIuLKoi— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) November 11, 2020
On the personal website, the report says citing Fox News, “Officials in Minneapolis are considering bringing in police from other jurisdictions as the city faces a shortage of officers and a wave of violent crime. Officers from the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office and Metro Transit Police would form Joint Enforcement Teams and primarily respond to violent 911 calls. ‘We’re not gonna be having these people out taking bicycle theft reports. These are going to be people out combating crime issues,” said John Elder, a spokesman for Minneapolis police.’”
What part of Hannity's report is true and False?
The 58-year-old host mentioned two key messages in his Twitter post. The first one states that there is a crime surge and the second one mentions police shortage in Minneapolis. Both the claims have turned out to be true as they have been reported by several publications. Hannity shared a link to a Fox report that mentions that officers from the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office and Metro Transit Police “would form Joint Enforcement Teams and primarily respond to violent 911 calls.”
This part of the report that officers from other jurisdictions might come to assist Minneapolis’s Police Department shortage is true. It has also been reported by Star Tribune that officers from other jurisdictions would form Joint Enforcement Teams, known as JETs to control violence in areas where it is spiking. As per reports, Minneapolis would have to reimburse the Sheriff’s Office and Metro Transit Police for the officers they would supply. It would cost Minneapolis nearly $497,000, money that would be taken out of the city’s contingency fund. The initial proposal aims to call police teams to form by November 15 and run through the end of the year. Minneapolis’ police shortage comes at a time when the city is struggling to combat a wave of violent crime, recording 74 homicides so far this year.
However, a certain part of Hannity's tweet cannot be verified. Hannity shared in his tweet ‘help us’ indicating it's a quote. He doesn't mention as to who says ‘help us’, raising questions if residents at Minneapolis begged for help saying that.
Why is there a police shortage in Minneapolis?
There has been a police shortfall in Minneapolis since it saw the brutal death of George Floyd on May 25, 2020. Floyd died after an officer knelt on his neck for nearly eight minutes, which sparked a wave of protests and riots throughout American cities in the name of Black Lives Matter. Following the incident of police brutality, a large number of officer departures were seen at the Minneapolis police department. As per Minneapolis Star Tribune, it even strained the department’s resources.
Fox reported that the City Council members pushed to disband the Minneapolis police department, as activists in other cities targeted to defund the police after Floyd's killing.
Internet responds to Hannity’s tweet
After Hannity tweeted that people are purportedly saying “help us”, users on the Internet mentioned that such scare tactics might not work. However, some approved Hannity’s claims on the scarcity of police officers and the increasing crime rate in the city. A user wrote that Hannity is not spelling the truth, “What are you talking about? I have friends and family in Minneapolis and they’re fine over there! What is this about?” A user finds it a scare tactic, “Typical Tea Party misinformation and scare tactics. The GOP is dead, this is all they have left.” Another concurred, “Scare tactic to incite violence hiding behind cops.” A user supported Hannity, “And that picture is what.. Made up too? Keep believing CNN and your lying Libs fat mouth.. Nothing you say make sense.”
What are you talking about? I have friends and family in Minneapolis and they’re fine over there! What is this about??— BIDEN~HARRIS 2020🇺🇸💙 (@colleen58151346) November 11, 2020
Typical Tea Party misinformation and scare tactics.— Zorba (@Badzorba) November 11, 2020
The GOP is dead, this is all they have left.
Scare tactic to nsite violence hiding behind cops.— Xavier Colquitt (@colquitt_xavier) November 11, 2020
And that pictures is what.. Made up too? Keep believing CNN and your lying Libs fat mouth.. Nothing you say make sense— President Elected Michael Dinh (@Dorklordzy) November 11, 2020