Crime Spikes in Twin Cities

Multiple community members affected by rising crime

Kaylee Chen, Staff Writer

In early September 2021, the Northrop campus was burglarized by an intruder. Ever since then, the Blake community has seen a spike in criminal activity both on campus and at their homes. In addition to facing intruders, at least two students have reported their cars in the parking lot having been broken into and one student’s windows being smashed. Unfortunately even outside of school students are faced with crime. Blake students have reported houses being robbed, intruders, car jackings, stolen cars, and stalkers. 

Ben Hykes ‘23, who lives in Edina, recently had intruders break into his house and attempt to break into his car. Since then, he and his family have become more cautious and taken more steps to protect themselves such as more home cameras and pepper sprays. Hykes and his family have unfortunately grown more accustomed to crime as of late, he states, “In my neighborhood, [crime] is common now, mostly carjackings and less breaking and entering. My family knows a lot of people in the neighborhood that have gotten carjacked this past year which is just ridiculous.” 

Nina Bush ‘22 lives right next to the Northrop Campus on Kenwood Parkway. She states, with experiences similar to Hykes, that “There has been a large increase in crime. Our neighbors actually got their house broken into at like 10am in the morning and a lot of the houses and neighborhoods by my house have had a lot of carjackings at gunpoint.” Bush reports how her family and those around her have also become increasingly aware of crime and have taken more safety precautions such as security cameras and simply being more aware of their surroundings. Bush notes as a senior who parks her car in the school student parking lot and having heard their friends’ cars being broken that “I’ve noticed that the security team this year especially has become a lot more involved in walking in and out of the car with them standing there, which I think has helped a lot.” Following the burglary, the security supervisor at the upper school, Gene Paulaskaks, sent an email describing the action Blake was taking to prevent and prepare for crime. Part of the plan was for more patrol around the school, the parking lot in specific, to watch out for any danger. 

Blake is not the only place where measures are being taken to fight crime. The entire Twin Cities region is going through the same experience and citizens are demanding action.

According to Kare 11, the mayor of Minneapolis, Jacob Frey, addressed the issue and acknowledged that change was needed. There has been a lack of police officers. Minnesota Reformer reports 300 officers quit following the “Abolish the Police” movement. The movement took off after George Floyd’s murder in the spring of 2020. The recent surge in crime has led Frey to swear in many new police members and in addition hire 40 community service officers working to mend the trust between citizens and the police department. The Hennepin County Chiefs of Police released a letter in attempts to curb the crime. This letter included increasing the severity of the prosecution of cases, revisiting bail reform procedures and stopping the use of “sign and release” warrants for crimes. Both Blake and the great Twin Cities are beginning to address the violence and enforce safer rules.