The Latest: 2nd Arrest in Minneapolis Protest Shootings

25 Nov 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Five wounded after shots fired during Minnesota ‘Black Lives Matter’ protest.

Since Jamar Clark was shot by police on November 15, protestors have been camped out outside the city’s Fourth Precinct police station, not far from where the shooting occurred. When gun-toting alleged white supremacists shot up a peaceful Black Lives Matter protest outside of a police station in Minneapolis on Monday night, leaving five people wounded and terrorizing Black Lives Matter activists locally and nationally, I was sad, but not surprised.MINNEAPOLIS — The latest in the investigation into the fatal shooting of a black man by Minneapolis police that has sparked more than a week of demonstrations (all times local): They were among scores of people who have demonstrated for more than a week outside a north Minneapolis police precinct in the wake of the death of 23-year-old Jamar Clark. Federal authorities are still investigating whether the man, Jamar Clark, who died from his injuries on Nov. 16, was handcuffed at the time of the shooting.

In the older lynching era, it wasn’t uncommon for civilians to take matters into their hands whenever black Americans gained a little political or economic ground. In the modern era in a country with more guns than people, there remain civilian enforcers of racist terrorism, but black Americans still fear members of local law enforcement. About 50 people were outside the building on Tuesday morning, with more trickling in, and some said they planned to stay despite a request from Clark’s family to end the protests. Protestors say the men were counterdemonstrators. “A group of white supremacists showed up at the protest, as they have done most nights,” Miski Noor told the Star Tribune. Jamar Clark’s family has released a statement asking the demonstrations outside the police precinct to end. “In light of tonight’s shootings, the family feels out of imminent concern for the safety of the occupiers, we must get the occupation of the fourth precinct ended and onto the next step,” the statement said.

Henry Habu, who said he has been providing security for protesters, said he and others approached four white people who were standing under a “Justice4Jamar” sign to ask what they were doing there. Police tweeted early Tuesday that officers are searching for three white male suspects in the shooting that occurred shortly before 11 p.m. about a block from the 4th Precinct. Eyewitnesses said that Clark was handcuffed when he was shot in the head; Minneapolis police officers Mark Ringgenberg and Dustin Schwarze – Schwarze was previously sued for civil rights violations – have been named as the officers involved.

Oluchi Omeoga witnessed the shooting and said a handful of protesters followed three men in masks to a street corner, where the men pulled out weapons and began firing. The brother of the man whose fatal shooting by a police officer has prompted protests in Minneapolis is calling for the end of a more than weeklong sit-in at a police precinct. Meanwhile, a study by the New America Foundation this summer found that domestic white extremists have killed more Americans since 9/11 than foreign terrorists – which is not surprising to anyone who has studied American history, slavery, lynching or the history of mass shootings. The state’s Bureau of Criminal Apprehension has taken over the case and gathered footage from several sources, but said it wouldn’t release the videos until it had completed an investigation.

Though five victims were taken by emergency personnel to local hospitals, there may have been more injured in the attack, “as some shooting victims found their own way to a hospital,” reported USA Today. I fear the police and their tanks and their tear gas and their guns and the very real possibility that white men who look like them and walk around brandishing guns with impunity could start shooting. In a statement Tuesday, Clark’s brother Eddie Sutton said, “Thank you to the community for the incredible support you have shown for our family in this difficult time. Clark’s death has brought renewed focus to a long history of tension between the Minneapolis police and the community—in particular the African American community—and to questions about discipline and violence on the force.

One of the first black kids who tried to go to peacefully integrate a public school, Ruby Bridges, was spit on, and needed federal marshals to keep white people from killing her. The statement says dozens of officers responded to assist victims at the scene a block north of the police department’s 4th Precinct, which has been the site of protests since the shooting of 24-year-old Jamar Clark on Nov. 15. A federal criminal civil rights investigation is also underway to determine whether police intentionally violated Clark’s civil rights through excessive force.

While it is being reported that none of the injured are suffering “life threatening injuries”, that’s not an accurate accounting of their real injuries. Their ability to live fully – to feel secure in body and mind and spirit, and to congregate in groups outside, and to protest – has certainly been threatened. The movement for black lives will continue to thrive: it keeps getting stronger week by week, from the streets of Ferguson to college campuses across the country.

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