Closing arguments have already begun this morning in the trial of Derek Chauvin over the death of George Floyd, and to call the Twin Cities tense would be an understatement. Protests over a recent police shooting in Brooklyn Center continue to target the police headquarters. A National Guard patrol got targeted by a sniper over the weekend, but fortunately no one was seriously injured.
A new police shooting in suburban Burnsville has protesters warming up all over again. Late yesterday, police shot and killed a carjacker who had victimized people twice in succession and had fired at police officers, the Star Tribune reports:
An armed suspect jumped out of a moving vehicle he had stolen and ran onto a busy Burnsville highway, where he tried to steal another vehicle before police fatally shot him Sunday afternoon.
The man ran in front of a moving SUV on Hwy. 13 near Interstate 35W, waving what appeared to be a gun at the driver, who drove across the median and onto the oncoming traffic lane to escape. No one was hurt. …
Word of Sunday’s police shooting came as demonstrators were taking a knee during a moment of silence outside the Governor’s Residence on Summit Avenue.
Some in the crowd said they were planning to head to Burnsville, although organizers told protesters to go to Brooklyn Center instead.
Here is the immediate preceding sequence before the police shooting, in which the perp tried to carjack his second victim, to no avail:
GRAPHIC VIDEO WARNING
Person pursued by police jumps out of moving car, appears to point a gun at another car on Highway 13 at I-35W in Burnsville. Runs into grass median and goes down. Working on details. Hwy 13 closed both directions. #BREAKING @kare11 pic.twitter.com/B0GUgUunAT
— Chris Hrapsky (@ChrisHrapsky) April 18, 2021
Despite the warning, the shooting isn’t captured on camera, or at least not obviously so.
For those who don’t know the Twin Cities, Burnsville is quite a ways off from Minneapolis. It’s “across the river,” a common phrase here, signifying a separation from the urban area of Minneapolis and St. Paul. Carjackings in this area would be a significant expansion of the violence within the Twin Cities, and a sign that it’s getting out of control here.
The victim in this case wants protesters to back off of the police. She identifies herself as a former police officer as well as a black woman who can see both sides of the confrontation, and concludes that the police did their job. This violent criminal was a threat to her, her goddaughter, and the entire community, she declared. “They didn’t have a choice but to shoot him,” she concluded (via Power Line’s Scott Johnson):
The woman whose vehicle was carjacked by an armed assailant who was taken down and killed by police in Burnsville, MN defends the actions of the police. pic.twitter.com/ZjjgnoSl4O
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) April 18, 2021
Scott notes that the Star Tribune’s report still doesn’t include the victim’s public statement. It does, however, include this nugget about the perp, emphasis mine:
In a statement, Burnsville police said the suspect, believed to be a white male in his 20s, was taken to HCMC, where he was pronounced dead.
As such, the prospects for renewed unrest over this incident seem a bit remote. However, the incident itself demonstrates the results of the general retreat on policing in this area over the last year since Floyd’s death and the impunity it has generated among criminals. That big spike in violent crime, especially carjackings, won’t stay contained in the Twin Cities forever.