Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak has said there will be an investigation into the actions of police during the Republican National Convention, in which 818 arrests were made.
St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman has also announced plans for a post-RNC investigation, with former U.S. Attorney Thomas Heffelfinger and former Assistant U.S. Attorney Andy Luger leading the independent investigation, according to the Minnesota Daily.
Coleman has recently been criticized for not supporting free speech. "He stood by while police were used to suppress political dissent," St. Paul resident John Schatz told The Pioneer Press. Schatz was one of 30 people who recently protested in front of a home where Coleman was holding a fundraising event. The group was protesting raids of self-described anarchists and the appointment of Heffelfinger and Luger to the independent investigation team.
Both investigation teams will be looking into several factors of the convention, including security protocol and police training. The investigation will also look at the numerous arrests made, including several on-duty journalists.
Most of the arrests ended in misdemeanors, according to Minnesota Public Radio. It may take several months for the courts to determine which people were accidentally arrested.
In the meantime, several legal organizations are offering assistance to those arrested, explaining what legal options are available. Some representatives of the organizations are optimistic.
"People are aware that they have the right to protest and to express themselves," said Bob Kolstad, a criminal defense lawyer with the National Lawyers Guild, which will represent some of the people arrested at the RNC. "I'm sure that they will assert those rights in court and hopefully at least in some of the cases the prosecutors will agree with that position and just dismiss some of the cases."