The Third Precinct may soon move to a temporary site just a few blocks from its burned-out former home on Minneapolis’ South Side.
A City Council committee on Thursday signed off on a $1.2 million-a-year lease with Lothenbach Properties II and Imagine Express for a building to house Third Precinct officers, who for the past few months have been working out of the Minneapolis Convention Center, among other sites. The move needs approval from the full council and Mayor Jacob Frey.
The precinct’s new home at 2633 Minnehaha Av. is about half a mile north of its former headquarters on E. Lake Street, which was overrun and torched by protesters during the riots that followed George Floyd’s death in late May.
Speaking at Thursday’s meeting of the Policy and Government Oversight Committee, Council Member Cam Gordon said he was pleased that the new site was “closer to the heart of” the precinct and that the city would gather community input before deciding on a permanent location. In the meantime, he said, the move would give officials “some space and some breathing room in terms of what we will do with the Third Precinct building itself.”
Officials have previously estimated that replacing the old Third Precinct police station would cost an estimated $10 million.
Council Member Alondra Cano said at Thursday’s meeting that she wasn’t “supportive of reinstituting a Third Precinct site there.”
Floyd was killed on May 25 after police detained him outside of Cup Foods at the intersection of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue on suspicion of trying to pass a fake $20 bill. Officer Derek Chauvin planted his knee on Floyd’s neck for about eight minutes as he pleaded to breathe before he lost consciousness and was later pronounced dead. Officers Thomas Lane and J. Alexander Kueng held onto Floyd’s legs and back while Officer Tou Thao kept back a crowd of bystanders who pleaded with the officers to let Floyd breathe. All four officers have since been fired.
Floyd’s death, which was filmed by one of the bystanders, triggered international outrage and days of protests, riots and looting in Minneapolis.
Chauvin is charged with one count each of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Thao, Kueng and Lane are each charged with aiding and abetting murder and manslaughter.