The Criminal Division is headed by Deputy City Attorney Mary Ellen Heng. The Criminal Division’s mission is to do justice, hold offenders accountable, and enhance the public’s sense of safety.
The City Attorney’s Office prosecutes petty misdemeanor, misdemeanor and gross misdemeanor criminal cases committed by adults that occur within the City limits and for which someone has been charged.
The Criminal Division is organized into three teams:
- Special Prosecution (focusing on repeat offenders)
- Domestic Assault
Aggressive Prosecution Strategy
The City Attorney’s Office is committed to the aggressive prosecution of domestic violence, driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs, weapons cases, as well as livability offenses which can affect the quality of life in our neighborhoods.
Active Involvement in Improving the Criminal Justice System
An important part of the Office’s public safety strategy is active involvement in improving the criminal justice system. Systemic changes have helped the Office focus its resources on those livability crimes that threaten the fabric of the City and its neighborhoods.
The Office worked with the Hennepin County District Court to facilitate resolution of matters at the Violations Bureau in order to minimize the number of these cases that appear on court calendars. The Office was active in the creation of the Community Court, the Domestic Violence Court, DWI Court, Veteran’s Court and Mental Health Court.
Proactive Collaboration with Neighborhoods on Community Justice
The Criminal Division works with neighborhood restorative justice programs, which assist those charged with a crime to sense their personal accountability by focusing on the community impact of their crimes. The Criminal Division also operates a Community Attorney Program, through which it has assigned a Community Attorney to office in each of the five police precincts in Minneapolis. Feedback from both the community and the Minneapolis Police Department has been very positive regarding this initiative and supports the office’s belief that the Community Attorney program is an effective tool to increase the Office’s connections with the community and improve the Office’s prosecution of livability crime.
Last updated Mar. 25, 2014