MPR News with Angela Davis

Re-Imagining Justice in Minnesota 

four people on stage
Ramsey County Attorney (left) and Rep. Cedrick Frazier, DFL-New Hope, listen as Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan answers a question during a discussion moderated by MPR News host Angela Davis during the Re-Imagining Justice Conference on Nov. 17, organized by the Minnesota Justice Research Center.
Courtesy Minnesota Justice Research Center | 2023

Public safety became a top concern as violent crime increased in Minnesota during the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the same time, there’s been increased public criticism of law enforcement agencies, the courts and penal systems.

What if the criminal justice system was reimagined from the ground up? Could our systems both “center humanity” and keep communities safe at the same time? What would that even look like?

Listen to an edited conversation with elected officials facilitated by MPR News host Angela Davis on Nov. 17, 2023 during the Re-Imagining Justice conference organized by the Minnesota Justice Research Center in St. Paul.


  • Melvin Carter is the mayor of St. Paul, first elected in 2017 and reelected in 2021.

  • Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan was elected in 2018 on a ticket with Gov. Tim Walz after serving as a state representative and CEO of the Children’s Defense Fund.  

  • Rep. Cedrick Frazier, DFL-New Hope was elected in 2020 to the Minnesota House of Representatives after serving on the New Hope City Council and working as a public defender and legal counsel in education settings.  

  • John Choi was elected Ramsey County Attorney in 2011 after serving as St. Paul’s city attorney and spending a decade in private practice.  

Subscribe to the MPR News with Angela Davis podcast on: Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or RSS.   

Use the audio player above to listen to the full conversation.