If You're Howie Gangestad - What Happens if you call 911?

Robert Olson
Chief of Police
City of Minneapolis

Dear Chief Olson:

I am writing you with a formal complaint regarding some calls made in recent months to 911.

Today we had a guy in our office who threatened to assault the gentleman I work with (Howie Gangestad). When he said “I’m going to get you and I’m going to get you now”, I was trying to see if he had a gun in the back of his pants. Needless to say, it was hard to tell. When he was about to take a swing at the gentleman I work with, he (Howie) reached into his desk drawer and pulled out a gun. He has a permit to carry this gun on the first seven days of the month. The guy said, “that’s it”, and proceeded to go outside and get his friend who I figured had a gun. At this point I called 911. It was approximately 9:55 a.m. The police did not arrive until 10:30 a.m.

What the Hell is wrong with this picture? I am pregnant and have been afraid for my life as well as Howie’s numerous times in the last two months. I do not blame these officers one bit. As a matter of fact, they have been the most considerate, sympathetic officers we have ever dealt with in a 911 situation. That is more than I can say for the majority of officers who have responded to our calls in the past. They seem to treat us like we were the criminals.

Howie called 911 about two weeks ago because a tenant almost hit him over the head with a hammer. Once again he had to pull his gun. It took the police in excess of twenty minutes (to arrive), at which time two squad cars with seven officers were dispatched. Although Howie had witnesses and the threats upon his life on tape, the police would not take the names of the parties who were threatening him. No arrests were made.

About four weeks ago, Howie had to evict tenants for lack of payment, police and neighbor drug complaints and noise. When he went over there and found only garbage, with the house open and half the windows broken, he changed the locks and tried to secure the building. The garbage was put in the back yard to be hauled away. This was at 4:30 p.m.

At 6:00 p.m., the upstairs tenants and those behind the duplex called, stating that the tenants were back busting out the rest of the windows in the house by throwing rocks through them. Howie called 911. The operator was so impolite he hung up and called 911 again. The second operator was more reasonable saying that she would dispatch a (squad) car immediately. Howie waited fifteen minutes and drove to the property address which was twenty-two blocks from his office. When he got there, Howie found that the tenants had set fire to the house.

The other tenants had called the fire department. The fire department had already arrived and put the fire out. Approximately ten to fifteen more minutes elapsed before a police car showed up. We had approximately ten people identify the perpetrators as my ex-renters and one of their mothers. Once again the police refused to arrest and prosecute these people.

We are not the type of people who are abusing the 911 system. Why is it that I cannot get any response to 911 calls. It seems as if there is enough manpower to arrest people for speeding, parking tickets and minor things, but not enough and LITTLE OR NO PUNISHMENT put into the more serious criminal actions.


Approximately two months ago, I heard something that sounded like firecrackers. When I went to look, I saw a gunman shooting off the top of my car (which was right in front of the office) at some people across the street. I was watching and was scared to death because we had our front door wide open. All he would have had to do was take four steps to come in. Someone in my office screamed at me to get down. What I did not realize was that the people across the street were shooting back. I had two bullet holes in my car and was only two feet away from the bullet that went into our building.

I called 911 while I was hiding under my desk. It took them (the police) about twenty to twenty-five minutes to get there. There were witnesses who could describe both gunmen and tell the police where they went. The police didn’t even bother checking - but I guess, why should they? It (the incident) was only one-half hour before and they (the shooters) were long gone. Once again we had two officers (female) who treated us as if were were the criminals.

In December 1995, I walked into the office. The front door was wide open, which was odd considering the fact that Howie h ad been in Brazil for the past month. At the time, I was not the only secretary. the other gal had worked the day before. I wondered if she had left the door unlocked. I decided to peak my head into the back apartment to make sure everything was OK. I noticed immediately that it was not. The apartment was in disarray. I noticed that the stereo, TV, VCR, and some other things were missing. I did not dare go upstairs in case the burglar was still there.

I called 911 and had the same two female officers who had treated me and another gentleman in my office (Howie) like crap. It turned out that the side door was broken into. That’s how they got in. The garage was also broken into. Almost everything was stolen.

Three months later, Howie was in the attic of his garage. He found an address/ appointment book. It did not look familiar so he started looking through it. What he discovered was that the last entry was made on the day before the robbery. This book had a piece of paper from Hennepin County stating that the person was on probation. The paper had the Name and Address of the robber. Would you believe that, again, no arrests have been made? What a joke!

Please respond to me as to what your thoughts are and what is happening in this city. Let’s make some changes that will count. A copy of this letter is being distributed to the Star Tribune and to all the major news channels. If interested, please call for ten + more examples.


Marlene Bergum
One Knock Realty

Read how Howie Gangestad has become Public Enemy No. 1 for Minneapolis' "problem property unit".



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