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You Too Can Be Part of the Police State!

Plus sexual harassment training for the U, Kmart's fate is slowly moving forward, and farewell to PinKU in today's Flyover.

Matthew Henry via Unsplash

Welcome back to The Flyover, your daily 1 p.m.(ish) digest of what local media outlets and Twitter-ers are gabbing about.

Police Department Too Cheap to Buy Its Own Security Cameras

Police admittedly aren’t that into doing their job these days. One way we can all make it easier for the MPD is to give them access to our private security camera footage. The city of Minneapolis has a page where you can “register your security camera to help fight crime.” What that basically means is that you let them know where you have a security camera parked, and if a crime occurs in the area, the police might ask you for footage. To be clear, they don’t actually have direct access to your camera. Still, some folks are seeing this move as a massive overreach. While the camera registration program isn’t new, there has been a push to get more people onboard, and neighborhood associations have been sending out email blasts encouraging residents to participate. 

State Agency to U of M: You Gotta Try Harder to Prevent Sexual Harassment

University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs fucked up big time, Minnesota’s Department of Human Rights has determined. The school is now dealing with the fallout of a 2018 sexual harassment case involving a grad student and James Ron, a tenured professor. The student, who was Ron’s was paid research assistant, had to put up with a variety of bullshit from him, which included his making sexual comments, commenting on her looks in front of her peers, and asking her to be his girlfriend and move in with him. He also regaled her with stories of his sexual encounters. The victim will receive a $75,000 settlement and free tuition from the U. Students and faculty will now have to complete bystander training each year; the DHR will be watching them the next four years to ensure compliance. According to the Strib, the now unemployed Professor Ron walked away with “$86,198.40 in severance, $28,107.36 in insurance premiums, and $80,685 to cover attorney fees.” Way to fail up, loser.  

Most Hated Kmart in America will Be Razed in 2-3 Years, Probably

It’s fun to talk smack about Uptown, but we’d argue that the Lake Street Kmart is the most underrated villain in Minneapolis. For years, the big box building and huge parking lot has been fucking up traffic, forcing buses, cars, and bicyclists to turn off of Nicollet and take a 2-5 minute detour around. Kmart had a 4,000-year lease (okay, it was only 75), but bankruptcy led them to give their final blue-light special in 2020. Now there’s a structured plan to end its tyranny over Nicollet Avenue. Phase I will begin in 2022, and entails talking to neighbors in the area about how to make things more multi-use and functional. Phase II and III will suss out what needs to happen to make that a reality. Then, most likely sometime in 2024, they’re going to tear that building down. And yes, Nicollet is going to be connected into one beautiful, never-ending street. In the meantime, USPS will continue to use the space.  

PinKU’s Out

New Year’s Eve will be your last chance to grab ramen burgers and crispy rice from PinKU Japanese Street Food, which is calling it quits after five and a half years in Northeast. Owner and co-founder Xiaoteng X Huang posted a lengthy, heartfelt statement on Facebook, thanking his mentors, chefs, staff, parents, and everyone who helped make PinKU a reality and “helped me in achieving the American Dream.” He’s also got the scoop on what’s next for 20 University Ave. NE: On January 1, Pa Tea & Poke will take over the space. “Sometimes, it’s also just necessary that we make room for other people who have fresher ideas and different talent,” Huang writes. Find more info on their NYE farewell celebration here