Sonya Eskridge is a writer from Maryland, who started her news career in radio at the age of 17. After graduating from Virginia Tech, she went on to write for a national publication where she was able to mold her personal voice. Always looking for ways to inform on important issues—or share her love of nerdy and girly things—Sonya thoroughly enjoys writing about a wide range of subjects.
The police department linked to the death of Philando Castile is distancing itself from the town where he was shot to save money.
The world was stunned as Philando’s fiancee broadcast the deadly traffic stop where the magnet school cafeteria supervisor was shot by officer Jeronimo Yanez last July on Facebook Live. Now, the St. Anthony Police Department has found the incident to be a huge financial burden.
According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, covering the costs associated with Philando’s death in Falcon Heights, Minnesota, was allegedly too expensive for the SAPD. While Falcon Heights is a suburb within the SAPD’s jurisdiction, the St. Anthony City Council introduced a resolution this week that would make Falcon Heights solely responsible for any costs incurred by incidents within its city limits.
This resolution, which aims to amend the SAPD’s contract with Falcon Heights, would include Philando’s death. While St. Anthony’s mayor wouldn’t specify how much money was spent in the aftermath, the resolution noted that it did cost the SAPD “emergency unbudgeted expenses.” The money was spent on data requests, protest patrol, and “numerous other things.”
The resolution, which passed unanimously on Tuesday, stated, “It would be inappropriate for St. Anthony to continue to assume this risk on behalf of Falcon Heights given its minimal public purpose to the taxpayers of St. Anthony.”
Under the SAPD’s current contract with Falcon Heights (home to approximately 6,000 people), officers patrol the small city and investigate crimes. However, Falcon Heights doesn’t have any oversight or authority over the SAPD. Neither is the city granted any supervision of the police under this contract, despite the fact that they’re paying more than $672,000 to the SAPD for protection this year alone.
Similarly, Falcon Heights is looking to cut ties with SAPD as well. A number of residents have urged their mayor to terminate the five-year contract, which was signed in 2014.