Criminal Forfeitures in Minnesota Rose More Than 11 Percent in 2017
Minnesota law enforcement agencies seized a little over $9.4 million in vehicles, firearms, cash and other property last year as the number of forfeitures related to criminal activity climbed year-over-year by more than 11 percent, according to a report released Tuesday by the Minnesota state auditor’s office.
In total, 7,852 forfeitures were completed by 320 local agencies. Just over $2 million in expenses and about $600,000 in amounts returned brought the net proceeds from the forfeiture operations to about $7 million.
The most common items seized were vehicles (61 percent), followed by cash (24 percent), firearms (13 percent) and other property (2 percent).
Driving under the influence or with a controlled substance was cited 88 percent of the time as the basis for property being forfeited in 2017.
Notably, the St. Paul Police Department reported 142 forfeiture incidents, nearly double that of the neighboring force in Minneapolis which had 85 such incidents. The Bloomington Police Department also ranked high on the list with 115 incidents, but fell well short of the Minnesota State Patrol and Department of Natural Resources’ Enforcement Division which topped all local law enforcement agencies with a reported 1,308 and 467 incidents, respectively.
The full report from Minnesota state auditor Rebecca Otto’s office can be viewed here.