Here We Go Again?

This afternoon Hennepin County Sheriff’s deputies shot and killed a man who reportedly was a homicide suspect in a parking ramp in Minneapolis, just a few blocks from the defunct (as of this morning) George Floyd memorial. Details are sketchy. Minneapolis Crime Watch is the most reliable source of information on such events:

The Star Tribune has an updated story. One could say that the Strib’s story is a “doughnut truth”: the truth, the whole truth, with a hole in the truth:

Law enforcement officers shot and killed a man Thursday afternoon in Minneapolis’ Uptown neighborhood, sources said.

The U.S. Marshals Service said members of its task force were trying to arrest the man on suspicion of being a felon in possession of a gun. The suspect, who was in a parked car, “failed to comply and produced a handgun, resulting in task force members firing upon the subject,” the agency said in its statement.

The Minneapolis Police Department was not directly involved, which apparently didn’t matter to the crowd that gathered:

Some people standing just outside the police tape near Lake and S. Girard Avenue chanted expletive-laden insults at uniformed Minneapolis police, whose officers were providing support to the lead agencies.
Many who gathered to chant anti-police slogans knew little except that officers shot a man, said Pharoah Merritt, who was at the scene with We Push for Peace. Officers at the scene had offered no information, he said.

“We understand the anger and ire when we see these police shootings,” he said. “We don’t know anything.”

Of course the great unknown, at this point, is the race of the “victim” who was wanted and who pulled a gun on the arresting officers. If he was white, Hispanic or Asian, no one cares. But if he was black, more riots are likely in prospect. Reporters who know aren’t telling.

Then there is the fate of businesses in the line of fire, which were economically viable just a couple of years ago:

The gunfire erupted on the fifth floor of the parking ramp, which is across the street from Stella’s Fish Café, according to emergency dispatches, which aired the first hint of trouble at 2:08 p.m.
Stella’s hastily closed after allowing diners already inside to finish their meals. Magers & Quinn, a nearby bookstore, also said it would close early out of an abundance of caution.

Imagine trying to run a business when your patrons are hearing gunfire across the street.

The saddest aspect of this story, perhaps, is the feckless response of Minneapolis authorities:

City Council Member Lisa Bender, whose ward includes Uptown, echoed the desire for more information, tweeting from the scene, “No matter the details, any violence or loss of life is a tragedy.”

“Details” meaning that the guy was wanted for various felonies, including, according to some reports, murder, and also the fact that he drew an illegal gun on the arresting officers. But hey, those are just details, and Lisa Bender is notorious for her view that calling 911 if a burglar invades your home “comes from a place of privilege.” What are “details” when there is racial animosity to be stoked?

What comes of today’s incident will depend on the race of the criminal who has met his just deserts. Meanwhile, more information will be forthcoming before long.

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