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Who We Are

A.J. Olson

Interim Chief of Police

With more than 36 years in law enforcement, Interim Chief Olson oversees the department's administration, which includes investigations, budget management and office support, professional standards, business technology and asset protection. During his tenure at MTPD, Olson has supervised many high-profile incidents, including the MTPD's role in Metro Transit's response to the tragedy of the I-35W bridge collapse in 2007, the agency's support of the Republican National Convention in 2008, the MTPD's support of the 2014 Major League All Star Game and the MTPD's security planning for Super Bowl LII in 2018.

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Photo of Captain Anthony Hines

Captain Anthony Hines

West Command

Cpt. Hines leads MTPD’s West Command and is responsible for overseeing more than half of the department's officers. West Command's patrol area includes Northstar Commuter Rail, the METRO Blue Line and the transit system west of the Mississippi River, encompassing major venues like Mall of America, Target Field, U.S. Bank Stadium and the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Hines, who is a 20-year law enforcement veteran, is also MTPD’s trainer of field training officers and serves on the department’s strategic planning and labor management committees.

Photo of Lieutenant Troy Schmitz

Captain Rick Grates

East Command

Capt. Grates leads MTPD’s East Command, overseeing a team of 32 full-time police officers who primarily serve St. Paul and surrounding communities east of the Mississippi River. Grates joined Metro Transit in 2005 and has served as a patrol officer, investigator, Sergeant and Lieutenant, primarily in the east metro. Prior to joining Metro Transit, Grates spent a decade as a patrol officer in the City of Litchfield.

Photo of Lieutenant Troy Schmitz

Lieutenant Troy Schmitz


Lt. Schmitz supervises the Investigations Unit, Juvenile Investigations Unit, Juvenile Outreach, and the Transit Crimes Unit (TCU). The Investigations Unit is responsible for investigating any criminal matters occurring on Metro Transit property. The Juvenile Investigations Unit and Juvenile Outreach team work together to investigate juvenile crimes with an emphasis on diversion and intervention. TCU is a plain-clothes unit responsible for addressing quality-of-life crimes and responding to emerging crime trends with pro-active patrolling.

Photo of Sergeant Joe Dotseth

Sergeant Joe Dotseth

Internal Affairs and Inspections Unit

Sgt. Dotseth runs the MTPD's Internal Affairs and Inspections Unit (IAU), which is dedicated to ensuring that the relationship between the department and the community is built upon trust and transparency. The IAU investigates complaints of misconduct and violations of department policy and conducts routine inspections of department functions. These inspections ensure that standard operational functions are being performed at acceptable levels.

Photo of Gwen Degroff-Gunter

Gwen DeGroff-Gunter

Juvenile Outreach Coordinator

DeGroff-Gunter is a 20-year veteran of the Minneapolis Police Department, who retired as a lieutenant in 2012. As MTPD’s juvenile outreach coordinator, DeGroff-Gunter collaborates with metro area schools, other police departments and community partners to coordinate and plan special events where youth and police can connect in a non-enforcement environment. She is also the coordinator for the department’s Juvenile Diversion Program which serves as an alternative to the criminal justice system for lower level offenders. MTPD’s juvenile outreach program also provides mentorship to youth who are interested in becoming police officers by hosting forums where youth and officers can have candid conversations about community policing.


Mad Dads of Minneapolis and Community Ambassadors

The Metro Transit Police Department partners with two well-respected and established youth services organizations in the Twin Cities, Mad Dads of Minneapolis and the Hallie Q. Brown Community Ambassadors program. Mad Dads and Ambassadors engage with youth on the buses and light-rail trains in an effort to reduce behavior on transit property that can lead to juvenile arrests. Sometimes the agencies will remind the youth of Metro Transit’s Code of Conduct, in other instances, Mad Dads and Ambassadors may connect a youth with services and resources like a food shelf, support at school, or a job.

Staff Highlights

Transit Police make arrests in recent wave of cell phone thefts

Wednesday, November 29, 2017. Metro Transit police officers have arrested 11 suspects for committing a bold crime of stealing cell phones from riders’ hands. Four of the suspects have been charged with felony theft and are facing thousands of dollars in fines and up to five years in prison. More arrests are expected as the investigation continues.

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New class of MTPD officers reflects diversity of transit community

Friday, October 27, 2017. The Metro Transit Police Department welcomed 13 new full-time officers during a swearing-in ceremony on Thursday, Oct. 26. The event included remarks from Chief John Harrington, General Manager Brian Lamb and Metropolitan Council Chair Alene Tchourumoff. More than half of the new officers are women and people of color and half speak more than one language, including Hmong, Laotian, Spanish, Somali, Arabic and Turkish.

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Metro Transit Police use teamwork and video surveillance to arrest vandalism suspect

Monday, August 28, 2017. Thanks to video surveillance footage and two alert Metro Transit Police officers, a 52-year-old man has been charged with breaking glass panels and stealing the heating element from the Blue Line’s Franklin Avenue Station. Metro Transit Police officers Emmanuel Martinez-Cruz and Samuel Scheeler made the arrest on Wednesday, Aug. 23, after recognizing the suspect while patrolling in downtown Minneapolis. The officers had been shown images of the suspect from surveillance video earlier that morning.

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Harrington recognized by chiefs association

Friday, April 28, 2017. Metro Transit Police Chief John Harrington was celebrated as one of the state’s top law enforcement leaders by the Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association this week. Harrington received the association’s Richard W. Schaller Award, which recognizes service to the community and the profession. Harrington accepted the award at the association’s Executive Training Institute in St. Cloud.

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Officer of the Year

2016 Officer of the Year recognized for 'servant leadership'

Friday, March 24, 2017. After a decade working in financial aid, Katherine Spear started getting restless. Looking for new opportunities, she ran a quick internet search and clicked on the first thing that came up – a chance to volunteer with the St. Paul Police Reserve Unit, which supplements the police force. “I sat in that Crown Victoria, started patrolling and I was hooked,” Spear said.

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Meet MTPD's Northside community policing team

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