Robbinsdale Police Chief Resigns After Prostitution Sting

Created: 03/23/2014 8:54 AM

(KSTP) - The Robbinsdale police chief resigned from his position Saturday morning after notifying city officials he was arrested in a prostitution sting last month, according to the city.

The sting was conducted on Feb. 20 at an undisclosed home in Coon Rapids, according to police documents released Saturday. Ten people were arrested and cited for hiring and engaging in prostitution, including former Chief Steven Smith. No information was given at the time of the arrest that Smith was a member of law enforcement, according to police.

Prostitution is listed as a misdemeanor in Minnesota. City officials say Smith gave his resignation to the Robbinsdale city manager Saturday morning.

Robbinsdale Mayor Regan Murphy said he's known Smith to be an excellent police chief.

"It's a sad day for the city," Murphy said. "Chief Smith made a great contribution the city and was a great employee. Smith stepping down was the best decision, and the city is moving on."

Murphy said city officials were blindsided by Saturday's revelations. "He was an exemplary employee, we are all disappointed in the situation," Robbinsdale City Council Member William Blonigan said.

Captain Jim Franzen has been appointed to acting chief, the city said.

No further details have been released in the arrests.

Steve Smith - Former Robbinsdale Police Chief
Photo: Anoka County Sheriff's Office

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