– by Nick Pfosi and Gabriella Borter
Minneapolis (Reuters) – The alleged shooter is charged with manslaughter after the killing of an African American at a police checkpoint in the US state of Minnesota.
The policewoman, who has since resigned, was released on Wednesday on payment of a $ 100,000 bail. Her first trial was scheduled for Thursday. In front of their former police station in the city of Brooklyn Center, protests broke out for the fourth evening in a row, and were largely peaceful. Mayor Mike Elliott called for calm.
A 20-year-old black man was shot dead during a police check in the Minneapolis suburb on Sunday. According to the police, he was stopped because of an expired license. Video recordings can be heard of the policewoman shouting “Taser, Taser, Taser” while trying to arrest, but then shoots her pistol. “Holy shit, I just shot him,” she said afterwards. The police chief Jim Gannon, who has since also resigned, spoke of an accident. According to the public prosecutor’s office, the policewoman wore the taser and pistol on opposite sides of her belt: she should have pulled the electric shock device with her left hand, but she wielded the gun with her right. The 48-year-old faces ten years imprisonment and a $ 20,000 fine if convicted.
Black George Floyd died in neighboring Minneapolis in May after a white officer kneeled on his neck. This was followed by protests in the USA and in several other countries against police violence and racism. In a statement on Wednesday, the victim’s family’s lawyer said it was by no means an accident. “It was a deliberate, deliberate and unlawful use of force,” said Benjamin Crump. “Driving a car as a black continues to be a death sentence.”
There have been at least 18 cases of taser and pistol confusion in the United States in the past two decades. Experts criticize the design of the electric shock devices, which looked too much like a handgun. In addition, the use of firearms is placed too much in the foreground in police training. The Arizona-based taser manufacturer Axon Enterprise points out that the handle has now been changed, the weight increased and models in yellow are also offered to make confusion more difficult.