As part of an initiative to reduce police shootings, a state agency has hired a liaison to work with victims and families involved in officer-involved shootings. The Minnesota Department of Public Safety’s Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) has hired Biiftuu Ibrahim Adam.
She started in March as the BCA’s Victim, Family and Community Relations Coordinator. Adam will be the liaison between the BCA and members of the community who are involved in officer use-of-force incidents being investigated by the bureau.
The new post is important because officer-involved shootings sometimes involve people with disabilities. Having a liaison was one of 28 recommendations made by members of the Minnesota Working Group on Police-involved Deadly Force Encounters.
Over the past five years, there have been more than 100 deadly force encounters with law enforcement in the state, with 60 percent of them in Greater Minnesota.
Nationally, 30 to 50 percent of people who died in a police encounter were in a mental health crisis or had a disability, according to Attorney General Keith Ellison, co-chair of the group, and the Autism Society of Minnesota.
“Biiftuu is a valuable addition to our team,” said BCA Superintendent Drew Evans. “She will help families understand the BCA’s investigative process and keep them informed of our progress in investigating their incidents.”
Adam is a Twin Cities native who holds a master’s degree in criminology and has nearly a decade of experience working with survivors of sexual violence, domestic violence, human trafficking and incarceration. She has worked in both nonprofit and government settings.
Prior to taking the BCA post, Adam served as crime victim liaison for the city of Bloomington, where she developed and implemented that city’s Crime Victim Services Program. She has also led research concerning racial disparities in the criminal justice system.
“Victims and families deserve support, guidance and communication through this process,” Adam said. “I look forward to serving the state in this new role and building community-driven, long-term solutions.”
(Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press, Minnesota BCA)