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Journalists: Robert Kroll Is Not Credible on Race and Policing

Robert Kroll: Not Credible On Race and Policing

Lieutenant Robert Kroll, Head of the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis, elected to that position on April 30, 2015.


This document has been prepared to begin a backgrounder for journalists on why we believe Lieutenant Robert, Kroll, current Head of the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis, and why we therefore demand that journalists who interview Kroll for their stories involving race and policing, must mention that he has persistently been accused not only of racism, but of actively embracing the organizations of White Supremacy, such as the Ku Klux Klan, and their slogans, such as “White Power.”

To report Kroll’s words in these contexts is not responsible journalism, and it reinforces the racist violence that law enforcement is permitted to inflict on communities and individuals of color in this state.

This preliminary report intends to accomplish two goals:

  1. To break the silence in the media regarding the clear and persistent loyalties to organized and explicit White Supremacist and racist ideals and organizations by law enforcement officer and PD Union Head Lieutenant Robert Kroll. This should have been done by journalists and not left to us. We therefore do not pretend to encyclopedism; these links are intended for journalists to begin this work, and to let journalists know that we expect them to do this work.
  2. To place journalists who interview Kroll on race-related stories on notice: the community of the Twin Cities will no longer stand for the complicity of media with racist police. It is reasonable to interview the Head of the Law Enforcement Union on race-related stories, especially, as is all to often, the use of violent officer force on citizens of color. It is not acceptable or reasonable, and will not longer be accepted, that in those contexts journalists fail to mention Kroll’s history of racism, or question why he is permitted to speak for law enforcement, or what that means for the Police Union.


Examples of Stories in which Kroll was permitted largely or entirely uncontextualized comment as head of the Police Union, on racial-justice issues.


Kroll comments on officer caught on tape using force in racist context…


Kroll argues against Personal Police Liability insurance:


Kroll as MFP Pres opposed the repeal of spitting, lurking, other racist ordinances:


Kroll thinks BLM is a destructive force, pulls out the Black On Black crime card:


More on Kroll opposing the repeal of lurking ordinances:


Easily Internet-Searchable Documentation of Kroll’s Race Problem:


The very first picture in the search for ““Robert Kroll” Minneapolis” is this (at bottom of this note)

Below is a 2007 court document claiming involvement by Kroll and Timothy Dolan in the systematic racist hiring, promotion, and firing of Black police officers, and specifically pointing out that Kroll wore a “White Power” badge on his motorcycle jacket (see “City Heat,” below), had a history of racist behavior, and implies he may have been involved in the distribution of a “KKK” flyer to Black officers. This report is primarily about Kroll’s “Crony” Timothy Dolan, who also deserves a very hard look. Pages (4-5, 15)


2007 City Pages article about that time that Kroll called Senator Keith Ellison a “Terrorist.”:


City Heat M.C.

Same article above largely discusses “City Heat,” the Chicago-based Law Enforcement Motorcycle Club with a Twin Cities chapter that has been accused of harboring White Supremacists.

“I am disturbed that these Minneapolis police officers associate with other law-enforcement officers who very publicly and proudly display racist symbols of hate next to their police department badge and patch,” said Minneapolis police Lt. Medaria Arradondo, a 20-year veteran.”


It appears that in 1995 he was sued in Federal courts for “beating, choking and kicking in the groin a 15-year-old boy of mixed race while spewing racial slurs.”

Indeed, Kroll owns a lengthy record of brutishness.


In 1995, he was accused of kicking, beating, chocking, and using racial slurs against a 15-year-old boy. But a federal grand jury cleared him of any wrongdoing.


In 1996, Kroll oversaw an Emergency Response Unit that performed a botched drug raid. In the ensuing confusion, one MPD officer was shot by his own colleagues. (See “Friendly Fire,” CP 9/9/1997.)


In September 2002, Kroll was involved in an incident that eventually led to a city payout of $60,000. (See “The Hit Parade Revisited,” CP 7/20/2005.)


And in December, the city attorney recommended Minneapolis pay $15,000 to settle a suit accusing Kroll of beating and kicking a suspect in an impound lot downtown in February 2004.


“Bob Kroll’s record in dealing with minorities speaks for itself,” says former MPD cop Mike Quinn.


Kroll has been accused of physically threatening a city councilman, Ralph Remington.


As defendant in a 2004 case where he and another officer attacked a man at an Art Fair; the main question is whether they were acting as police officers at the time.


He is one of the defendants in this civil case about excessive force from 2007.


So here is our demand to journalists covering Black Lives Matter,
and any issue that combines local policing and issues of race:

if you report on Kroll without mentioning his racism problem,
you have become part of the problem.

If you don’t talk about Kroll, we’ll talk about you.


Endorsed By:

Twin Cities General Defense Committee Local 14 | Black Lives Matter Saint Paul | ABC Detroit | ABC Kansas City | ARA Kansas City


to add your endorsement as a group or individual, leave it as a comment or DM on our Facebook page:

LT. Robert Kroll, Head of the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis, elected to that position on April 30, 2015, and notorious racist.

LT. Robert Kroll, Head of the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis, elected to that position on April 30, 2015, and notorious racist.

Reposted from Twin Cities General Defense Committee Local 14.

Twin Cities IWW wins unpaid wages from local daycare


This summer, IWW member Anja was fired from her job at Crocus Hill Academy, a daycare. She was told that it was for talking to current and former coworkers about issues with their boss, Imran Khan. Two weeks later, Anja had yet to receive her final paycheck, her personal belongings, or a copy of her personnel file, which she had requested. Three union members from the Twin Cities IWW branch accompanied Anja to the daycare to deliver a demands letter. Mr. Khan reacted aggressively, shouting at and threatening the union delegation, accusing Anja of mistreating children, and calling St. Paul Police. He refused to accept the letter, and police asked IWW members to vacate the property.

The following day, a larger group of IWW members leafleted the daycare. As Mr. Khan yelled from the door, union members talked to parents about Anja’s firing and other grievances. Upon Mr. Khan’s continued refusal to receive the letter, branch members conducted a call-in and social media campaign against Crocus Hill Academy. Within a few days, Anja received a call from the school’s new director, begging her to give him a copy of the demands which Mr. Khan refused to accept. She has since received her final paycheck and an additional check for $120 to compensate for her personal belongings and personnel file, both of which Mr. Khan “misplaced.”

Manipulative, lying bosses like Mr. Khan are a danger to all working people, especially when they punish workers for protected activity like talking about work conditions and steal wages. But when we stand alone, or when we look to the government for help, we give up our power to fight. When we come together with other working people, we can get what we deserve. Direct action works and solidarity wins. Get in touch with the Twin Cities IWW if you have problems at work.


NLRB Rules Union Canvasser Fired Illegally By Sisters’ Camelot,Orders Back Pay, Reinstatement


This past Friday, September 25, the National Labor Relations Board issued a new ruling regarding the struggle between the IWW Sisters’ Camelot Canvass Union and their former bosses at Sisters’ Camelot.

This new ruling reverses the 2013 ruling by an administrative law judge which stated the workers at Sisters’ Camelot were not protected under the National labor Relations Act because they were independent contractors. With this decision being reversed, Sisters’ Camelot is ruled to have violated labor law when they fired Canvass Union member shugE Mississippi while on strike in 2013 as part of their union-busting campaign.

This new ruling also uses the same argument to clarify that Sisters’ Camelot violated labor law when they refused to negotiate with their worker’s union, and again when they offered concessions to workers if they were to abandon bargaining collectively as a union.

The ruling orders that Sisters’ Camelot formally apologize, offer Mississippi his job back, pay him back pay, and remove all language in their records and workplace trying to justify the illegal firing.

“This is fantastic news! After over two years on strike, it’s great to get the recognition that our union deserves and see Sisters’ Camelot finally held accountable for union-busting,” stated Canvass Union member Maria Wesserle.

“Now no one can argue that the bosses at Sisters’ Camelot are anything more than union-busters. It’s great to hear that their lawyer’s argument to get them off on technicalities ultimately failed,” said Canvass Union member Bridget Laurenson.

When asked his thoughts about the ruling shugE Mississippi stated: “This ruling upholds the validity of our strike against corrupt bosses. Remember: Hippy scabs are still scabs.”

The Sisters’ Camelot Canvass Union has been on strike since March 1st 2013 and a complete boycott of Sisters’ Camelot called by the Twin Cities IWW has been in effect since May 6th, 2014 after enduring a violent attack during a picket of Sisters’ Camelot. The Sisters’ Camelot Canvass Union is a campaign of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), a revolutionary labor union founded over a century ago for all working people.  

Unity against white supremacy & the Confederate flag


Stand Against Racism and White Supremacy!

On Saturday morning, September 5th, supporters of the Confederate Flag – a symbol of white supremacy – will attempt to rally at the State Capitol building. We will be there to confront them.

History has shown that if you give organized racists and fascists an inch they will take a mile. We can’t just ignore them, hoping that they are too dumb or harmless. Organized fascists and white supremacists are weak in Minnesota only because anti-racists and anti-fascists have actively opposed them.

In the wake of the growing movement against racist violence, we must stand united against white-supremacist backlash.
Working-Class people of all nationalities and ethnicities need to unite against White Supremacy.

Please join us at the State Capitol on Saturday, September 5th to say “No!” to the Confederate Flag and “No!” to white supremacy.

-The Twin Cities IWW General Defense Committee

When: Saturday, September 5, at 8:30am
Where: Minnesota State Capitol, 75 Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Saint Paul, Minnesota 55155

Call for workshop proposals for 4th Annual Social Justice Education Fair


From Classroom Struggle TC
Dear students, parents and caregivers, educators, and community members,
We are now accepting workshop proposals, due September 4, 2015
We’re looking for quality workshops of all types by students, parents, school staff, educators, after school workers, and community members for this year’s theme *Decolonizing Our Schools: Building Asian, Black, Brown, and Indigenous Power*. Check out our website for more information about the theme and to submit a proposal.
Interested in getting involved in the fair in other ways too?
The Twin Cities Social Justice Education Fair Organizing Committee

Black Lives Matter (at work)


In the months since the many protests of Black Lives Matter, there has been a society-wide discussion about the issues BLM has raised. This discussion has happened, most visibly, on television, and the comment sections of news sites or Facebook. But they have also been happening at work. The Organizer asked members of the Twin Cities IWW about what kind of conversations have come up at work, and here are a couple responses.

Aaron, call center worker

Black Lives Matter, but maybe not so much to my weight-lifting, protein-shake consuming coworker. We work together in a call center, and now that we’ve escaped from our busy season, we have a lot of downtime. Most of my conversations with this well-meaning guy, whom I’ll call Andrew, center around sports, particularly the inadequacies of all of Minnesota’s various teams. The day after a grand jury in Missouri failed to indict Darren Wilson for the murder of Michael Brown, however, our lighthearted banter took on a decidedly more serious tone.

Andrew is the epitome of a suburban guy: polos and khakis are his fashion, clean shaven and well groomed is his face, and simple are his thoughts. Andrew doesn’t like talking about politics or current events and finds reading the news depressing. So it was very out of the ordinary to hear him talk about something like the Michael Brown case. Predictably, his argument went along the lines of “Michael Brown committed a crime, police have to do their jobs, Michael Brown shouldn’t have run at Darren Wilson, Michael Brown’s race is totally unrelated to this shooting.” I’m a Wobbly in secret at my job, so I tried to keep my arguments about systemic racism and classism to a minimum. Instead, I asked Andrew questions. Would Michael Brown be dead if he were white? Would Darren Wilson have been indicted if he were black?

My asking him questions didn’t radically change his opinion, but he did become noticeably quieter and more contemplative after. The talk of sports dropped off for a time, and he was bringing up the issue of racist policing regularly. I think forcing Andrew to really examine his reaction to the case, to come up with actual reasons for why he supported Wilson and labeled Brown as nothing but a dead criminal, was a small victory. He might be a meathead, but at least he’s one who reconsidering his complacency with a system that so completely devalues the lives of people of color.

Juan, warehouse worker

When the BLM stuff first started getting coverage, especially locally, people in general took a cautious approach conversationally at my work. As the protests became more disruptive, people’s opinions became more obvious. Not a huge surprise, but there were major racial differences when it came to how BLM has been viewed. White coworkers were some of the most vocal and scathing critics, saying a lot of what we’re familiar with by now. More than one of them claimed they would run down protesters in their car if they personally came across them, blocking the street. One of my white coworkers repeated this even though I told him that I and many people I know have been going to the rallies. We got into a pretty heated argument which ended with me threatening to snatch him out of his minivan if I saw him creeping up behind a BLM rally. This may seem harsh, but multiple people have attempted to ram their vehicles through marches here and I think expressing an intent to do so is a death threat.

Although many of my white coworkers were anti-BLM, I was pleasantly surprised by one older guy who is part of my social circle at work. He drives a Harley, lives in a trailer park and used to live a pretty rough life. Assumptions might tell you that he would be the type who is most against a movement like BLM. But to the contrary, he always asked me about the marches and rallies and was excited to hear that people were willing to stand up to police brutality.

My black coworkers have been almost all passively or vocally supportive. They talk about the marches positively and don’t let the disruptive nature of them get in the way of that support, unlike many of the whites. One black coworker even went to the Mall of America rally, and was excited and enthusiastic to tell me about it. He was one of the few people I told about the rallies and marches beforehand, and then described them the next day. Interestingly, he cites my example of attending this stuff as motivation for him volunteering in the search for Barway Collins, a young black kid who had gone missing. I didn’t immediately get the connection, but it does make sense. To him, the BLM movement isn’t just about police brutality, it is about the affirmation of young black lives, no different than volunteering in a community wide effort to locate a missing child. I think this unintentional lesson I learned from my coworker was important and humbling.

May 26th school board action #studentsnotsuspects


From Classroom Struggle Twin Cities

Upcoming MPS School Board Action, #StudentsNotSuspects:

Join the Social Justice Education Movement (SJEM) and the Coalition for Critical Change and come out to the upcoming special school board meeting to demand an end to cops in schools. At this meeting, the school board will determine a proposal for its contract for School Resource Officers (SROs).

May 26th, 6:00pm
Davis Center
1250 W Broadway Ave
Minneapolis, MN 5541
Facebook Event: please share widely!

You can also show up with us to one of three upcoming budget forums to demand that the $500,000 going to SROs be reallocated to support restorative, transformative, and non-punitive programs. Visit the MPS website for date, times, and locations. We hope to see you there!

April 30: May Day Eve social and panel


Join the Twin Cities IWW on April 30th for a May Day eve event! Members from some of the branch’s campaigns and projects will be on hand to speak and there will be snacks and May Day activities.

When: Thursday, April 30 @ 7PM

Where: 2 East Franklin, Suite 1, Minneapolis, MN

Mall of America worker trespassed from job after Black Lives Matter protest

pGrwmpGwVsoYqMS-800x450-noPad by x372712 On May 1st, the 36 people will go to court for a pre-trial hearing, on charges relating to the Black Lives Matter protest at the Mall of America on December 20th. For one defendant, though, the punishment began before the protest was over. Tadele Gebremedhin was a worker at the Microsoft Store at Mall of America. It was a well-paying job, and Tadele was good at it- he knew every product in the store and was one of the location’s most valued employees. All that changed, however, during the police crackdown against the Black Lives Matter demonstration. Tadele was arrested during the protest while trying to return to his job from his lunch break. Served with a trespass order that forbids him from entering the Mall, he has been unable to go to work since. Despite being promised that he could receive an exception from the trespass order so that he could go to work, all his attempts to get the exception have been ignored or rejected by the Mall. Tadele has spent the last four a half months unemployed. Tadele says that he never intended to take part in the protest, much less be arrested during it. “Protesters started arriving at the mall at 2 PM, which was the same time I took my hourly lunch break.” said Tadele in a written statement. “From the beginning of my break my intentions were to grab lunch and purchase a hat with one of my co-workers.” During his break, however, the rotunda and parts of the second floor began to fill with protesters and lines of riot police. Tadele found it difficult to return to work as the Mall went into a ‘lockdown’. “Around 2:30 PM … my co-worker and I started walking in a circle on the second floor but then we were told to leave The Mall of America by officials even though we worked there.”, Tadele said. “We informed the mall officials and the Bloomington police that we were not part of the protest- but, me personally I do support the protests, as it is my right to support something I believe in.” At this point, Tadele and his coworker tried to explain to the police that they needed to return to their job. Their break was 20 minutes from being over, and the two wanted to get back to work on time. “I personally approached one of the officers and asked if I could go back to my job but he completely ignored me.”, said Tadele. “I turned around and asked another official the same question with my work badge but I was denied again. I tried this approach for the last time–but the last thing I remember was six Bloomington officers jumping on me yelling, “Arrest him!””. After being tackled and handcuffed by the six officers, Tadele was taken into a network of tunnels away from the publicly traveled part of the mall. There he was handcuffed and made to sit on the floor against a concrete wall with other people who had been detained. A local IWW member who was arrested while acting as a marshal, said he met Tadele in those tunnels. They were put in the same police van together. “He kept asking to speak to his boss, so he could at least tell his boss where he was”, he reported. “But, the cops almost completely ignored him.” According to the IWW member, Tadele was not the only non-protester profiled and targeted by the police. “In our van there were five men, and only two of us had been involved in the protest”, he said. “The other three- Tadele included- had been caught in the police sweep. All three were black and Hispanic men who had been near the protest and got targeted by the crackdown”. After being directed into the police van, Tadele and the other people arrested were driven into a parking lot in Bloomington out of walking distance of the Mall. The only directions they were given were to the nearest Blue Line station. It was after dark when Tadele was released, on a December night with a sweater and no coat. Like the other people arrested, Tadele was given a trespass paper saying that he would be arrested if he entered the Mall of America again for a year. However, Tadele says that before he was released, he was told by the officers present that he would receive an exemption to allow him to work. “I was promised that I would receive a permit from The Mall of America to continue working at the Microsoft store.” Tadele said. “I guess that wasn’t the case because the next day I was denied for the permit and ever since then I have been jobless for about 4 ½ months now. This has been very hard for me, I have been struggling both mentally and financially” One other MoA worker was arrested while trying to get to work during the protests. She has received the exception. Tadele, however, has requested it repeatedly and not received it. After it became apparent that he would not be able to return to work, Tadele resigned from the Microsoft Store. He reports that his supervisor and the company want him back, and even offered to transfer him to California. He couldn’t make the move, however, due to a lack of funds. Sign the petition: Let Tadele Return to Work!

New Junior Wobblies website

Screenshot - 03302015 - 03:03:51 PM

Junior Wobblies Camp will be back bigger and better than ever in summer 2015! We are excited to announce that camp will be in session August 15th-19th at our new location, Camp Holiday in Deerwood, MN! Please check out our website and stay posted to hear updates on JRWU Camp 2015.

What is Junior Wobblies camp?

Every year families from across the United States and Canada gather to share a summer camp like no other. Junior Wobblies is the children’s camp of the Industrial Workers of the World. A chance for our children to gather together and explore the themes of our shared working class history, culture, and struggles, both historical and contemporary, in a safe and loving atmosphere embodying the themes of solidarity and mutual aid. This camp gives children a chance to find their own place within the movement and their own identities as Junior Wobblies. Located in an outdoor setting and facilitated by devoted volunteer organizers and counsellors it is a chance for children and adults to have a family holiday experience while at the same time building relationships and reinforcing their ties to the broader class struggle.

Our new website can be found at


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