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Minneapolis City Hall. Photo: Torey Van Oot/Axios

Fencing and barricades are already rising downtown ahead of next month's trial for Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis Police Department officer charged with the killing of George Floyd.

Driving the news: City leaders previewed security plans yesterday in what they billed as the first in a series of regular updates to the public.

Why it matters: Officials are hoping to avoid a repeat of last summer, when civil unrest over Floyd's killing led to days of turmoil, community trauma and hundreds of millions of dollars in damage to public and private property.

What to expect: Lots of law enforcement and some detours and disruptions to regular service downtown.

  • Up to 2,000 National Guard and 1,100 law enforcement officials from 12 jurisdictions, including MPD, will be on hand. Minneapolis Fire Department will also have back-up support.
  • Beginning March 1, Sixth Street South will be closed between Third and Fourth avenues. Light rail trains will run as scheduled.
  • Access to some government buildings, as well as skyways, will be restricted.

Mayor Jacob Frey said he has no specific plans to issue a citywide curfew, but that officials are "leaving that option on the table" if needed.

  • Communication with the public, including community activists and others involved in peaceful protests, will be a priority throughout the trial, leaders said.

What's next: Jury selection begins March 8. Opening arguments are slated for March 29 and the trial could wrap by late April.

Of note: The security ramp up is already getting heat from at least one local lawmaker.

  • "This is not how you demonstrate care for a city traumatized by police violence. Council did not approve this plan and I certainly don't personally approve of it," City Council member Jeremiah Ellison tweeted of the fencing.

This story first appeared in the Axios Twin Cities newsletter, designed to help readers get smarter, faster on the most consequential news unfolding in their own backyard.

Go deeper

Lawsuits against Des Moines cops could get pricey for taxpayers

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Des Moines, Iowa recently hired three lawyers at $150 an hour to represent police in two high-profile lawsuits alleging misconduct, according to city documents.

Why it matters: Taxpayer costs for litigation and potential settlements in the cases could be significant. And the lawsuits could influence long-running tensions between police and the public.

Feb 17, 2021 - Axios Twin Cities

Scoop: Doug Wardlow announces run for Minnesota's attorney general

Photo: Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

Republican Doug Wardlow is officially launching his second bid for Minnesota attorney general, Axios has learned.

The state of play: Attorney General Keith Ellison, a Democrat, edged out Wardlow by four percentage points in 2018 — the closest margin of any statewide race on the ballot that year.

  • Wardlow, who has been teasing his announcement on social media, raised $85,000 for his bid in 2020, ending the year with $34,000 in campaign cash. Ellison raised about $150,000 and reported $54,000 cash on hand.
Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
22 mins ago - Economy & Business

The Fed could be firing up economic stimulus in disguise

Federal Reserve governor Lael Brainard at a "Fed Listens" event. Photo: Eric Baradat / AFP via Getty Images.

Even as global growth expectations increase and governments pile on fiscal spending measures central bankers are quietly restarting recession-era bond-buying programs.

Driving the news: Comments Tuesday from Fed governor Lael Brainard suggest the Fed may be jumping onboard the global monetary policy rethink and restarting a program used following the 2008 global financial crisis.