St. Paul, Minnesota – The St. Paul Police Department says that state Representative John Thompson has apologized to the sergeant he accused of racially profiling him during a traffic stop earlier this month. The department said Johnson showed up to the Western District offices “unexpectedly” and had a “very brief” conversation with the sergeant
Thompson was pulled over in the early morning hours of July 4th for not having a license plate on the front of his car. Thompson responded to the ticket by accusing the officer of racially profiling him, but the sergeant reiterated the stop was for the license plate, which is required by state law.
“You pulled me over because you saw a Black face in this car, brother,” Thompson said in body camera footage of the stop. “You looked at me in this car, you looked in this car and busted a U-turn and got behind this car.”
Law Officer recently reported that Thompson’s license was revoked on April 21, 2019 for his failure to pay child support in Ramsey County.
St. Paul Chief Todd Axtell demanded an apology from Thompson for accusing the sergeant of racially profiling him.
“These aren’t accusations I take lightly, so I looked into the traffic stop, watched the body worn camera footage and spoke to the sergeant,” Axtell wrote in a Facebook post on Friday. “This stop, made at about 1:20 in the morning, had absolutely nothing to do with the driver’s race.”
The stop set off a series of scandals for Thompson. First, questions about Thompson’s residence emerged after he gave the officer a Wisconsin driver’s license during the traffic stop. The address listed on his July 4 ticket is a St. Paul address that is not in his district.
In recent days, Republican and Democratic leaders, including Governor Tim Walz, have called for Johnson to step down after reports of domestic assault allegations emerged over the weekend. Thompson denies the allegations, saying through his attorney that he questions the authenticity of the police reports. The lawmaker has never been convicted of domestic abuse.
CBS4 reports that Thompson initially rejected calls for his resignation, but on Wednesday, his lawyer said he would take some time to consider resignation after being found guilty in a 2019 hospital disturbance.