Sgt. Michael Keefe waits his day in court
“A profile in courage and integrity: Lt. Michael Keefe,” is the headline of my August 29, 2007 column. Lt. Keefe “would tolerate neither racial animus and discrimination nor departmental abuses under his command.” The closing two sentences of that column were, “Will the mayor and MPD chief act with the same courage and integrity? How they act will reveal the real heart of this administration and its police department.”
Retaliation included demotions and transfers, despite significant performance and command ratings. Although I had never talked with Lt. Keefe, I wrote several columns about this and filed a civil rights complaint against the Minneapolis Police Department and then-Mayor RT Rybak and then-Police Chief Tim Dolan. That 2007 filing number is A6457-EM-1F-RP.
As an outgrowth of my and Federal Department of Justice (DOJ) investigating, the DOJ created the five year PCRC (Police Community Relations Council), which I co-chaired. This lawsuit of Keefe, who is White, became one of the most significant litigations involving how MPD corrupted its ethics and service, and how it and the city fostered the racism leading to the destruction of the Black Police Officers Association.
Gandhi said, “The ‘good’ will win in the end.” We see that here, as at long last, the District Court for Hennepin County and the State of Minnesota, has ordered all investigation information — depositions, wire taps and other materials, however gathered — be released for review by the general public. These documents show the bravery and courage of Keefe, the real heart of the MPD, and reflect how accurate I’ve been in my reporting on the Keefe case and what I filed in my civil rights complaint in 2007.
Another corruption sign: the shredding, by the Office of the City Attorney, of various city responses and my responses, which was crazy, as I still had my copies. The fox continues to be in charge of the hen house.
On January 9, 2008, the city of Minneapolis sent their six-page response to my August 30, 2007 complaint filing, which clearly laid out the level of power that drove the complicity that destroyed the Black Police Officers Association (another sign: the $750,000 settlement with five of those African American officers). Confidentiality agreements closed any further discussions until federal court stripped the city of its confidentiality agreements pertaining to the evidence regarding Lt. Keefe.
George E. Henderson, the legal council for the U.S. DOJ, in his letter of May 29, 2008, cited the City’s and MPD’s continued violations of Title X of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42USC, 2000g. The two years of depositions for Keefe’s lawsuit showed significant complicity in violating Keefe’s rights as well as the rights of the five African American officers awarded $750K in damages.
The DOJ was concerned about the misconduct of the City of Minneapolis. Unfortunately, as Keefe awaits his day in court, the Obama administration continues to give aid and comfort to the local Democratic political machine.
Our so-called African American community leaders did all that they could do to undermine and destroy the Black Police Officers Association. Now testimony in open court will attest to the roles played and civil rights violations committed, in return for profits and gratuity for their betrayal.
These documents, now open to the general public for examination, offer a better understanding of the dark future and probable consequences facing African American communities that don’t make positive changes.
God bless those who continue the battle against those who betrayed and destroyed the Black Police Officers Association and wrecked the lives of so many in law enforcement.
For Ron’s hosted radio and TV show’s broadcast times, solution papers, books and archives, go to www.TheMinneapolisStory.com. To order his books go to his books go to Beacon on the Hill Press.