Over the weekend a Somali-American police officer fatally shot an Australian woman in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The death took place during a 911 call that involved a possible assault of a woman. The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension released a press release on Sunday where they provided some details on the events that took place prior to this woman’s death.
They indicated the incident took place late in the evening on Saturday and police officers’ body cameras had not been turned on. As well, the squad camera in the car did not capture the shooting, unfortunately. Investigators are still in the process of trying to find other video footage that would show what happened that night.
No explanation has been provided for why the body cameras were turned off. Because they are meant to always be on. The department has a clear policy that cameras are meant to be turned on when they feel that there might be criminal activity taking place as well as before the use of force. If officers feel they are about to use force then they are required to turn the camera on.
Damond had called police because she felt a woman might have been in the process of being sexually assaulted. When both officers appeared near her home at 11:30 pm she was shortly thereafter shot in her alleyway. The medical examiner confirmed her death was caused by a gunshot wound to the abdomen. But investigators did not find weapons where the shooting took place.
Most details remain unknown but the investigation into the cause of her death continues. The woman’s family released a statement Monday evening via the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and said the following,
“We are trying to come to terms with this tragedy and to understand why this has happened.”
Despite the fact that Minneapolis authorities have not released the victims personal information The Star Tribune reported that the victim was 40-year-old Justine Damond of Sydney, Australia. She was engaged to be married. Close to the location where she died about 50 of her friends and neighbors gathered to show their respects in a semi-circle along the sidewalk and street. They had drawn chalk hearts all over the pad of the driveway to show their respect.
The Australian native had recently relocated to the Midwest and worked advertising her own services which included personal health and life coaching workshops. Damond’s future stepson Zach Damond is 22-years-old. He said the following to news outlets about her death just prior to his Dad’s August wedding to her,
“Basically, my mom’s dead because a police officer shot her for reasons I don’t know. I demand answers.”
Damond’s fiancé said the following,
“Her family and I have been provided with almost no additional information from law enforcement regarding what happened after police arrived. We’ve lost the dearest of people and we are desperate for information. Piecing together Justine’s last moments before the homicide would be a small comfort as we grieve this tragedy.”
Chief Harteau of the Minneapolis Police Department released the following statement via social media,
“I want to acknowledge the pain and frustration that family and community members have following the fatal officer involved shooting on Saturday night. This is clearly a tragic death. I also want to assure you that I understand why so many people have so many questions at this point. I have many of the same questions and it is why we immediately asked for an external and independent investigation into the officer-involved shooting death. I’ve asked for the investigation to be expedited to provide transparency and to answer as many questions as quickly as we can.”
Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges said the following about the entire ordeal,
“There are still many questions about what took place, and while the investigation is still in its early stages, I am asking the BCA to release as much information, as quickly as they are able to.”
She had visited the scene of the crime. This is the same place where she had previously represented when she was on the City Council. During her speech to reporters, she mentioned that Damond’s death had made her heartsick and deeply disturbed. Very few if any politicians or public servants have commented on this via a national platform.
The most interesting part of it all is that the two officers involved in the shooting were men named Mohamed Noor and Matthew Harrity. It was Noor who shot and killed Damond. Noor’s attorney released the following statement on his behalf,
“He takes these events very seriously because, for him, being a police officer is a calling. He joined the police force to serve the community and to protect the people he serves. Officer Noor is a caring person with a family he loves and he empathizes with the loss others are experiencing. The current environment for police is difficult, but Officer Noor accepts this as part of his calling. We would like to say more, and will in the future. At this time, however, there are several investigations ongoing and Officer Noor wants to respect the privacy to the family and asks the same in return during this difficult period.”
Nobody is reporting on the fact that Noor is a Somali-American. The mainstream liberal media loves to report when Caucasian police officers shoot and kill African-American individuals. However, this tragic death is completely ignored. While this tragedy is sad it goes to show that police officer involved shootings don’t discriminate.