Police Insanity sparks riot in Nth Minn.

Matthew X profrv at nex.net.au
Thu May 13 02:34:42 PDT 1999

MPD Bullet Hits Black Flesh Again in North Minneapolis by Christopher Loch 
contempla at riseup.net
Minneapolis Police staged an apparent drug raid executing a "high risk 
warrant" in North Minneapolis Thursday night. Allegedly a pitbull attacked 
a police officer after they initiated the raid. The officer then fired at 
the dog killing it. A richochet off the ground from the police fire wounded 
an 11 year old boy. Then a large number of neighborhood residents angered 
that yet another African American had been shot by the MPD in a short 
period of time hit the streets. They confronted the police and the 
mainstream media present.
The police pulled out of the neighborhood after a large number of people 
hit the streets, allegedly throwing bottles and chunks of concrete. Channel 
29 Fox News reported that a few reporters were sent to the hospital after 
being beaten by a crowd, and that damage had been done to media vehicles, 
including one vehicle that was burned.
As to why the mainstream media would have been targeted, one might 
speculate that their often blatantly biased reporting in favor of the 
police--frequently omitting information that would lead the public to 
question the police's actions--has led to frustration. Apparently such 
frustration blew up tonight.
The mainstream media coverage also included an interview with one of the 
white reporters who was apparently trapped in his vehicle by a crowd, but 
was not injured. The reporter described fearing for his life. The anchor 
went on to repeat that the reporter feared for his life several times 
during the coverage. The coverage did not venture to say if the people 
inside the house that the police raided (no doubt with guns drawn and with 
masks on) feared for their lives, or if the boy who was shot feared for his 
Indeed, coverage of the situation on Fox News went out of its way to be the 
PR arm of the MPD, assuming that the police were justified in all of their 
actions. Police spokespeople were interviewed. The coverage also showed men 
and women from the community in the streets shouting, but it did not offer 
them the opportunity to be heard. Nor did it interview any community 
spokespeople who might have expressed the feelings of the community. 
Instead it preferred to juxtapose "reasonable white folks" (this phrase was 
not stated, but it was definitely implied) with "rioting" African Americans.
On Fox News and on CBS affiliate WCCO's website channel4000 the wound 
inflicted on the 11 year old boy was referred to as "not life threatening". 
They also mentioned that the boy was expected to make a "good recovery". At 
the same time, they acted very differently expressing great concern when 
describing the reporters' injuries--which were also not life threatening.
Michelle Gross account
I was on the scene last night/this morning until about 1:00 a.m. and wrote 
the report below as soon as I got home. This is the third shooting of a 
Black person in Minneapolis in as many weeks (Martha Donald, Terrell 
Oliver, and now this youth).
We talked to many folks last night, including a number of witnesses to the 
incident. People were/are righteously angry. Some folks were throwing 
chunks of concrete at passing cars (I've got three new dings on my car as 
souveniers) to prove it. People are just worn out of the endless daily 
harassment by police, who drive by and shout racist comments at them, flip 
them off, etc. as well as the cop's blatant disregard of the lives of Black 
folks. One woman told us that her 14-year-old son had just got beaten up 
yesterday by police for no real reason and when she called to complain to 
the precinct captain, he hung up on her. Last night, she was in her yard, 
not far from the shooting, when cops taunted her from the street. She 
started telling them off when one of them told her she can't talk to them 
that way. She cited her First Amendment rights and they told her that 
people like her don't have First Amendment rights. There were many other 
examples of cops messing with people, as they always do in one of these 
incidents. Clearly, they were trying to provoke a certain response from the 
One last thought before posting my report. Some folks were attacking 
passersby indiscriminantly. This is always a possibility in a situation 
like this. However, they also landed some of their best licks on folks who 
well deserve it, like the mainstream media. No doubt, the media is already 
poor-mouthing about how could people be angry at us, we just want to report 
the truth, etc. According to what I've read, the media is already 
portraying the community members as out of control, animals, etc. My 
feeling is that while the people didn't always pick the right targets, they 
certainly had the right sentiment. We need to be ready to stand with the 
people because there will be a backlash. I would encourage folks who want 
to be involved to get to our meeting on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at 2104 
Stevens Ave in Minneapolis.
Now, my report from last night:
Communities United Against Police Brutality URGENT UPDATE August 22/23, 2002
********************************************** Some of us returned just a 
little while ago from the scene of yet another police shooting in North 
Minneapolis. This time, police shot a 10-year-old boy. They claimed that 
the dog whose leash the young man was holding came at them and when they 
shot the dog, a bullet ricocheted off the sidewalk and hit the boy. 
Luckily, the young man is still alive.
We talked to a number of witnesses and their version is somewhat different 
from the cop's version. First of all, it was acknowledged by a number of 
people including the man who owned the dog, that the dog was obedience 
trained and a friendly dog who had never bitten anyone. Second, several 
people stated that the dog had been shot at least three times--once in the 
shoulder, once in the abdomen and once in a forepaw. Third, police claimed 
on the news that they came to the house to serve a warrant but folks who 
saw the incident said they came out of a police van with guns drawn and 
that as soon as the door was opened, the cops opened fire on the dog. Some 
folks indicated that police actually dragged the 10-year-old out of his 
house after the shooting (possibly to make it seem as if he was outside at 
the time of the shooting).
After the shooting, the situation in the neighborhood became quite intense. 
We saw a media van that was wrecked and burned out. Cars were being pelted 
with rocks as they drove through the streets. Police cars were swarming the 
neighborhood and helicopters circled overhead. Some people felt that police 
had put some ringers into the crowd to provoke a fight between members of 
the community and the cops.
We talked to many people who were sick and tired of the seemingly endless 
police brutality they endure on a regular basis. A number of folks were 
very pleased to hear about the lawsuit against police and other actions we 
are taking.
Spike Moss arrived on the scene and told us he is meeting witnesses at a 
convenience store on 26th Ave N between James and Knox Aves at 11:00 a.m. 
to take them down to meet with the mayor. From talk among various people, 
this may turn into a community rally, though exact plans are unclear at 
this time.
Our meeting Saturday is likely to be a good bit larger than usual, with 
many folks talking about the lawsuit. We will soon need folks to get into 
neighborhoods to talk about the lawsuit and find folks who want to be part 
of it. Stay tuned for further actions regarding this shooting tonight and 
the ongoing problem of police brutality. ____________________________________
Communities United Against Police Brutality 2104 Stevens Avenue 
Minneapolis, MN 55404 Hotline 612-874-STOP (7867)
Dozens of people shouted at police officers and broke windows in a city bus 
and a news van late Thursday, protesting after a 10-year-old boy was 
injured by a bullet that ricocheted from a police officer's gun.
The officer was shooting at a pit bull dog that had been turned loose on 
police who were trying to serve a search warrant on a house suspected of 
narcotics activity. But the bullet hit concrete and ricocheted into the arm 
of the boy who wasn't in the line of fire, a police spokeswoman said.
The boy's injury wasn't life-threatening and he was being treated at a 
local hospital, the spokeswoman said.
The incident happened at 7:30 p.m., but tensions grew later as TV news 
crews arrived to cover the event. About 75 to 100 people gathered in the 
north Minneapolis neighborhood and shouted at police and journalists.
The windows were broken out of one news van and a city bus, the police 
spokeswoman said. Two reporters for the Star Tribune of Minneapolis were 
assaulted and suffered minor injuries, an editor at the newspaper said.
Officers remained on the scene late Thursday, but they hadn't been able to 
search the house that originally brought them to the neighborhood.
Last week, dozens of people gathered in another north Minneapolis 
neighborhood to protest when two police officers shot a 19-year-old man who 
threatened them with a handgun.

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