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Minneapolis Agrees to Pay $3 Million to Settle Theft/Official Oppression Claims Against Strike Force

By Brandon Sample

The City of Minneapolis agreed to pay $3 million to settle a class-action lawsuit over the operations of its now disbanded Metro Gang Strike Force (Strike Force).

When the Strike Force was in operation, minorities were constantly targeted and harassed by Strike Force Officers. Zelaido Garcia experienced Strike Force misconduct first hand.

In 2008, when Garcia went to pick up his car from the impound lot, Strike Force officers taunted and humiliated him and took his wallet. When the officers finally returned Garcia’s wallet, $100 was gone.

This was not the first time Strike Force officers stole from citizens. They took $4,500 from Dagoberto Rodriguez-Cordona. Another 200 or so people were similarly victimized.
According to the suit, the Strike Force “engaged in a pattern or practice of using their apparent authority as police officers to extort cash and property…particularly from those concerned about their immigration status who would naturally perceive that they had no ability to assert legal rights.”

Despite the apparent wrongdoing of the officers, none are currently facing criminal liability.


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