Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training

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The Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) is an administrative body of the State of Minnesota, that sets regulations, and controls the training and licensing of Police officers.[1] The Minnesota legislature replaced the Minnesota Peace Officer Training Board (MPOTB) with the Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) in 1977.[2] Minnesota's Board was "the first law enforcement occupational licensing system in the United States."[3][4]

Colleges and Universities that offer training for Police officers must be certified by the Board.[2] The Board is responsible for the exams candidates must pass before they can serve as Police officers in Minnesota.[5] More than 80 percent of Minnesota's Police officers receive their training through one of colleges or universities in the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system.[6]

Inquiry into the killing of Philando Castile

In 2016 a 32-year-old black man named Philando Castile was shot and killed by Police officer Jeronimo Yanez during a routine traffic stop.[7] The Board looked into the killing, and determined Yanez had only received a total of two hours of de-escalation training in his five years on the force.[8] The killing stirred controversay, and the Board recommended creating a fund to modify Police training to help prevent the kind of rapid escalation of the use of force seen in this killing.[9] In 2017 Minnesota's Governor endorsed a recommendation the fund should be named in honor of Castile. The recommendation triggered opposition from the State's Police officers. Bob Kroll, the outspoken leader of the union for Minneapolis Police officers argued that the fund's name should honor Police officers.

In July 2018 Teresa Nelson, legal director of the Minnesota branch of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) published a report critical of Minnesota's investigations into the killing.[10] Her criticisms included the recommendation that the Board have the authority to remove Police officer's license to Police.

The legislature did change the regulations so that Police officers were required to undergo at least 16 hours of crisis intervention training.[11]

Star Tribune investigative reporting of October 2017

On October 1, 2017, the Star Tribune published an investigative report into Minnesota Police officers convicted of crimes who continued to work as Police officers.[3] They reported that, since 1995, more than 500 Police officers had been convicted of crimes and continued to work as Police officers. Tim Bildsoe, the Board's chairman, called on Minnesota's legislature to increase the Board's authority over officers. He described the Board following a "70's model". Officers could only lose their licenses if convicted of felonies.

The Star Tribune compared Minnesota's Board with Georgia and Oregon's Boards.[3] In Oregon any conviction can trigger a license revocation. In Georgia a license revoation can follow any act "which is indicative of bad moral character or untrustworthiness."

Inquiry into the killing of George Floyd

The May 25, 2020, Killing of George Floyd, by officers of the Minneapolis Police Department, triggered discussion on how to update police training.[5][6][12][13][14]

Derek Chauvin, Tou Thao, Thomas K. Lane and James Alexander Kueng, the four officers with a role in Floyd's killing, were prompty fired, and soon faced criminal charges. They continued to hold licenses to work as police officers.[1] According to the Star Tribune the Board started a review of their licenses to work as police officers on June 17, 2020.

Scholarly analysis of the Board

As the first Board of its kind, in the USA, it has been the subject of multiple scholarly analyses.[15][16]

In 1984 Maria Pastoor criticized the Board because the training in how to react to Domestic Violence.[15] According to Pastoor the training the Board oversaw defined Domestic Violence as a crime against the value, while using a "hierarchical family model" that placed males, and their interests, in an inherently superior position.

In 2009 Susan M. Hilal and Timothy E. Erickson, of Metropolitan State University, noted that no other state had required all Police officers to earn a College degree.[16]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Greg Stanley (2020-06-17). "Minnesota licensing board to review four ex-officers' roles in George Floyd killing: POST Board has the power to revoke the four former Mpls. cops' licenses.". Star Tribune. Archived from the original on 2020-06-18. https://web.archive.org/web/20200618030832/https://www.startribune.com/minnesota-licensing-board-to-review-four-ex-officers-roles-in-george-floyd-killing/571300012/. Retrieved 2020-06-24. "While all four officers who have been charged in the killing of Floyd were fired from the Minneapolis Police Department, they are still licensed Minnesota peace officers." 
  2. 2.0 2.1 "About the POST Board". Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training. https://dps.mn.gov/entity/post/about/Pages/default.aspx. Retrieved 2020-06-29. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Jennifer Bjorhus; MaryJo Webster (2017-10-01). "CONVICTED, BUT STILL POLICING". Star Tribune. Archived from the original on 2017-10-01. https://web.archive.org/web/20171001035333/https://www.startribune.com/minnesota-police-officers-convicted-of-serious-crimes-still-on-the-job/437687453/. Retrieved 2020-06-30. "To assess Minnesota’s performance, the Star Tribune reviewed hundreds of pages of documents from the state’s police oversight agency, the Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Board, as well as court records, victim statements and police reports." 
  4. Bob Fletcher. "Introduction". Fletcher for Sheriff. https://www.fletcherforsheriff.com/police-officers. Retrieved 2020-06-30. "As the first law enforcement occupational licensing system in the United States, the POST Board was tasked with overseeing licensing and training requirements as well as setting standards for agencies and officers." 
  5. 5.0 5.1 Emma Quinn (2020-06-25). "MN State to review law enforcement training programs". kbjr6 (Qloquet, MN). https://kbjr6.com/2020/06/25/mn-state-to-review-law-enforcement-training-programs/. Retrieved 2020-06-29. "The Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training or POST is collaborating with Minnesota State. In January, POST started to review processes after changes in leadership." 
  6. 6.0 6.1 Ryan Faircloth (2020-06-17). "Minnesota State colleges to review law enforcement training in response to George Floyd's killing". Star Tribune. Archived from the original on 2020-06-18. https://web.archive.org/web/20200618025128/https://www.startribune.com/minnesota-state-colleges-to-review-law-enforcement-training-after-floyd-s-killing/571319522/. Retrieved 2020-06-29. "Minnesota State's police officer programs are certified by the Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST). System law enforcement programs include training on skills such as firearm safety, SWAT, interrogation, crime scene investigation and threat assessment." 
  7. Clarissa Hamlin (2017-07-07). "Minnesota Weighs Naming $12 Million Cop Training Fund For Philando Castile". News One. https://newsone.com/3723987/philando-castile-minnesota-police-training-fund-12000000/. Retrieved 2020-06-30. "The money will likely be divided and distributed among police departments across Minnesota. The Peace Officer Standards and Training board, a group of law enforcement officers and community members, will determine how to specifically use the new training dollars, which were approved by the state legislature earlier this year." 
  8. Brandon Stahl (2017-06-22). "Yanez had limited training in defusing situations, records show". Star Tribune. Archived from the original on 2017-06-22. https://web.archive.org/web/20170623032351/https://www.startribune.com/yanez-had-limited-training-in-defusing-situations-records-show/430256953/. Retrieved 2020-06-30. "This year the Legislature passed a bill to triple state reimbursement for police training from $320 per officer to $1,000 that would begin in 2018 and require 16 hours of training in areas that would use de-escalation, said Nathan Gove, executive director of the Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training." 
  9. Stephanie Lang (2017-07-31). "Minnesota Police Training Fund Won’t Be Named After Philando Castile". News One. https://newsone.com/3729799/philando-castile-police-training-fund/. Retrieved 2020-06-30. "However, after strong opposition from law enforcement, a Minnesota peace officer training board voted against naming the $12 million initiative after Castile on Thursday, disappointing members of Castile’s family, the Pioneer Press reports." 
  10. Teresa Nelson (2018-07-06). "Two Years After the Police Killing of Philando Castile, Justice Continues to Be Denied". ACLU. https://www.aclu.org/blog/racial-justice/two-years-after-police-killing-philando-castile-justice-continues-be-denied. Retrieved 2020-06-30. "We also need to facilitate investigations and, where appropriate, discipline officers who use excessive force. First, the Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training, which is responsible for dispensing occupational licenses to law enforcement, should be empowered to act like every other professional licensing board and conduct its own separate investigations and make its own decisions about actions against an officer’s license." 
  11. Jillian Peterson; James Densley (2018). "Is Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) training evidence-based practice? A systematic review". Journal of Crime and Justice. doi:10.1080/0735648X.2018.1484303. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/0735648X.2018.1484303?casa_token=ELZLhHEgjM8AAAAA%3A-frCFg2ApsK_BuETOPVVL-mBBCylcc9d_V9u0EI2P-h7jDfdeM50EX6J_WEvPG3f-iXbXnJrt7jFnA&. Retrieved 2020-06-30. "CIT is ‘more than just training’ (CIT International 2017), but increasingly only the 40-h law enforcement training aspect of the CIT model is consistently used. In January 2018, for example, the Minnesota board of Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) approved learning objectives for training in crisis intervention and mental illness crises, as required by Minnesota Statute 626.8469." 
  12. Shelly Schaefer; Jillian Peterson; Sarah Greenman; Gina Erickson (2020-06-17). "Hamline professors: If they want to improve policing in Minnesota, legislators need to know this". Twincities Pioneer Press. https://www.twincities.com/2020/06/17/mn-policing-changes-hamline-professors-legislature/. Retrieved 2020-06-29. "Minnesota is one of the few states that requires a post-secondary degree to become a peace officer. Individuals seeking a career in law enforcement can choose to attend one of the 30 Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) accredited education programs. The board certifies that these schools are covering the 410 learning objectives adopted by the MN POST Board." 
  13. Gina Erickson; Sarah Greenman; Jillian Peterson; Shelly Schaefer (2020-06-02). "Break the cycle: Five changes in Minnesota policing that can be enacted right now". Minnesota Post. https://www.minnpost.com/community-voices/2020/06/break-the-cycle-fives-changes-in-minnesota-policing-that-can-be-enacted-right-now/. Retrieved 2020-06-29. "Officer Chauvin’s previous use of force incidents should have been reviewed by a board that includes citizens, separate from criminal and administrative investigations. This is being done in other cities, to increase transparency and accountability. Domestic Fatality Review teams can be used as a model." 
  14. Brian Lambert (2020-06-25). "Minnesota AG Ellison sues oil companies over climate change". Minnesota Post. https://www.minnpost.com/glean/2020/06/minnesota-ag-ellison-sues-oil-companies-over-climate-change/. Retrieved 2020-06-29. "Erik Misselt, the interim director of the Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training, said the POST board’s policies haven’t kept up with the public’s expectations for police accountability. … Misselt said he’d like to see the POST board go to the state Legislature and ask for changes in state laws to broaden its authority." 
  15. 15.0 15.1 Maria K. Pastoor (1984). "Police Training and the Effectiveness of Minnesota "Domestic Abuse" Laws". Law & Inequality: A Journal of Theory and Practice 2 (2). https://scholarship.law.umn.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1294&context=lawineq. Retrieved 2020-06-30. "In a hierarchical family men are more important and more powerful than women and girls. Women take care of men's and boys' emotions, and their physical, including sexual, needs.". 
  16. 16.0 16.1 Susan M. Hilal; Timothy E. Erickson (2009). "College Education as a State-Wide Licensing Requirement: An Analysis of the Minnesota Model 30 Years Later". Critical issues in justice and politics. https://secure.suu.edu/hss/polscj/journal/v2n2.pdf#page=12. Retrieved 2020-06-30. "While there are individual agencies in other states that have adopted both two-year and four-year degree requirements (see for instance Bowman, 2001; Carter, Sapp & Stevens, 1989; Police Association of College Education [PACE], 2008; Travis, 1995), to date no other state has followed Minnesota’s lead in requiring a post-secondary degree for entry level licensing or certification.".