Jury awards $585K to Minneapolis cop over license lookups

A federal jury has awarded $585,000 to a police officer who alleged that 58 fellow officers from the Minneapolis Police Department broke a federal privacy law by searching for her driver's license data without a lawful purpose.

Posted: Jun 21, 2019 1:10 PM
Updated: Jun 21, 2019 1:31 PM

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A federal jury in Minnesota has awarded $585,000 to a police officer who alleged that 58 fellow officers from the Minneapolis Police Department broke a federal privacy law by searching for her driver's license data without a lawful purpose.

The jury returned its verdict Wednesday in St. Paul in favor of Amy Krekelberg. Her attorneys said other officers improperly searched for her private data 87 times from 2009 to 2013 —accessing information including her photograph, address, age, height, and weight — inflicting emotional distress in the process.

Human Rights Watch said in a statement Friday that the case was one of 14 federal lawsuits across the country making similar claims, and that it highlights the need for stronger data protections. It was also one of many such cases filed in Minnesota in recent years, most of which resulted in settlements.

"The Minnesota case shows that without strong protections, police officers may abuse their data access - even by invading the privacy of their fellow officers, particularly women," said Sarah St. Vincent, a researcher at Human Rights Watch who observed the trial. "As Congress and the states consider adopting stronger data protections, they should limit what police can do with personal information."

Former St. Paul officer Anne Rasmusson sued several Minnesota communities in 2012 after she requested an audit of searches for her driver's license data and learned that officers had looked up her photo and other data over 500 times. She won settlements of more than $1 million, and the publicity from her case spurred a wave of dozens of lawsuits against over 150 cities across Minnesota, including cases filed by TV personalities and other civilians.

Krekelberg filed her lawsuit in 2013 after requesting a similar audit. Court records show that Krekelberg reached settlements earlier with several other Minnesota communities. St. Paul agreed to pay her $29,500 in 2017. The lookups happened both while she was a Minneapolis Park Police officer and after she joined the Minneapolis Police Department in 2012, her lawyers alleged.

City spokespeople did not immediately respond to a request for comment Friday.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 485230

Reported Deaths: 6554
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1006801585
Ramsey43047801
Dakota36254390
Anoka33274384
Washington22065255
Stearns18723201
St. Louis14794262
Scott13273107
Wright12517115
Olmsted1177988
Sherburne871572
Carver771040
Clay690387
Rice670091
Blue Earth593835
Kandiyohi579474
Crow Wing519681
Chisago498445
Otter Tail481870
Benton446190
Winona418049
Mower404131
Douglas392568
Nobles386847
Goodhue385568
Polk342762
McLeod339349
Beltrami337351
Morrison324247
Lyon313044
Itasca312746
Becker310941
Isanti305754
Carlton300149
Steele299711
Pine282016
Freeborn280523
Nicollet258141
Todd247830
Brown244637
Le Sueur235020
Mille Lacs227247
Cass219924
Waseca208917
Meeker207434
Martin189328
Wabasha18623
Roseau180217
Hubbard160640
Houston157314
Dodge15214
Renville149540
Redwood147027
Fillmore13728
Chippewa136335
Cottonwood134820
Pennington134116
Wadena130920
Faribault122917
Aitkin118933
Sibley117310
Watonwan11728
Rock115714
Kanabec107419
Pipestone101424
Yellow Medicine97617
Murray9438
Jackson93510
Swift87918
Pope8025
Marshall77815
Stevens7418
Lake73718
Clearwater71914
Lac qui Parle68316
Wilkin67110
Koochiching61811
Big Stone5163
Lincoln5062
Grant4918
Unassigned47968
Norman4768
Mahnomen4417
Kittson40821
Red Lake3625
Traverse3055
Lake of the Woods2191
Cook1180

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 362189

Reported Deaths: 5414
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk58146549
Linn20653312
Scott18288207
Black Hawk16249291
Woodbury14961211
Johnson1383473
Dubuque13537194
Dallas1135890
Pottawattamie10765143
Story1021645
Warren555274
Clinton543284
Cerro Gordo533681
Webster518787
Marshall496272
Sioux494369
Buena Vista473236
Des Moines457661
Muscatine451191
Wapello4330108
Jasper416966
Plymouth394577
Lee375352
Marion359069
Jones294154
Henry292737
Carroll285548
Bremer280154
Crawford274735
Boone259630
Washington254147
Benton252854
Mahaska224346
Jackson221438
Dickinson217439
Tama213465
Kossuth208154
Clay193525
Hamilton192042
Delaware188839
Winneshiek188427
Buchanan185129
Fayette185035
Page183219
Hardin181039
Wright179731
Harrison179669
Cedar177923
Clayton168053
Butler166331
Mills163120
Floyd162740
Madison154518
Cherokee153935
Poweshiek153730
Hancock146829
Lyon145841
Allamakee145646
Iowa144423
Appanoose139147
Grundy139030
Jefferson138232
Winnebago138230
Cass134151
Calhoun133711
Mitchell130840
Louisa128241
Union126331
Chickasaw125213
Sac124218
Emmet121240
Shelby121033
Franklin118419
Humboldt117425
Guthrie116528
Palo Alto104921
Montgomery103936
Howard103121
Clarke100520
Unassigned9890
Keokuk98129
Monroe93128
Adair91928
Ida91032
Pocahontas85519
Davis82623
Monona81627
Greene77310
Lucas73821
Osceola70514
Worth6987
Taylor66412
Fremont5919
Decatur5789
Van Buren55918
Ringgold52020
Wayne48821
Audubon4869
Adams3264
Rochester/St. Mary'S
Clear
32° wxIcon
Hi: 43° Lo: 14°
Feels Like: 20°
Mason City
Clear
34° wxIcon
Hi: 44° Lo: 17°
Feels Like: 22°
Albert Lea
Partly Cloudy
36° wxIcon
Hi: 41° Lo: 14°
Feels Like: 25°
Austin
Partly Cloudy
34° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 13°
Feels Like: 23°
Charles City
Partly Cloudy
32° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 15°
Feels Like: 20°
Mild conditions expected this week
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Community Events