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World News | Deadly Minneapolis Police Standoff Revives Racial Concerns

MINNEAPOLIS (US), July 19 (AP) The shooting death of a young black man whose family said he was suffering from a mental health crisis has revived some mistrust of the Minneapolis Police Department and their perception that officers are quick to take black lives. White goes to greater lengths to capture the suspect alive.

The department and the state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension had not said as of Tuesday why two police snipers shot and killed 20-year-old Andrew Tekele Sundberg early Thursday after a six-hour standoff. And they haven’t released the police video of the confrontation.

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“We want to be treated the same way white people would be treated in the same situation,” said Trahern Crews, a leader of Black Lives Matter Minnesota and an organizer of a protest at the scene.

Police said they rushed to the scene after a 911 call from a woman who said a neighbor — Sundberg — was firing a gun into her apartment and endangering her 2- and 4-year-old sons.

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They said they evacuated the woman and other residents and worked for hours to convince Sundberg to surrender.

“Everyone was working together to try to reach a peaceful resolution to a dangerous situation while keeping neighborhood residents safe,” Mayor Jacob Frey said at the time.

He called it “not the outcome that anyone wanted.” City officials have since been tight-lipped about why the officers were fired, with the investigation now in the hands of the state Crime Bureau.

Sundberg’s death comes just two years after George Floyd was killed by officer Derek Chauvin and seconds after Amir Locke was killed by a Minneapolis SWAT team member when they burst into an apartment to execute a no-knock search warrant. .

Prosecutors declined to charge the officer because Locke raised a gun, but Locke’s family said the black man was simply startled.

The standoff that lasted six hours didn’t matter in determining whether Sundberg’s shooting was justified, said John Baker, a professor of criminal justice studies at St. Cloud State University who trains aspiring law enforcement officers.

“What’s the matter, what was going on when the snipers opened fire? Was there an imminent threat to themselves or others at that particular time?” Baker said the dismissal of both officers suggests they were ordered to do so.

“I don’t see a scenario in this day and age — as well as these cops are trained in de-escalation — that anybody is going to order them to stop it unless there’s an imminent threat to the lives of police officers or other people,” he said.

A protest outside the building turned tense Saturday when Arabella Foss-Yarbrough, the neighbor who called 911, confronted Crews and other protesters.

He said the situation was not comparable to the killing of Floyd, who was unarmed, and asked if protesters would have stood up for him if he had been killed.

“This is not right,” Yarbrough shouted at the protesters. “If I die, will he be the bad guy?”

Sundberg often went by his middle name Tekle. His parents, Mark and Cindy Sundberg, who are white and adopted him from Ethiopia as a child, were in protest.

They expressed sympathy for Foss-Yarbrough but said they did not believe their son deserved to die.

Their attorney, Jeff Storms, who is also part of the Floyd family’s legal team, did not immediately respond to messages Tuesday.

Crews, a Black Lives Matter activist, said in an interview that the protesters were “in no way rejecting what Takele did.”

But he said he and other protesters don’t believe police were justified in killing Sundberg.

He noted that police shot Sundberg several hours after he was evacuated from the building and surrounding area.

To the crew, it was another example of a black man being killed in a confrontation with police, while suspects of other races were kept alive. He noted that on the same morning Sundberg was killed, police in the southern Minnesota town of Faribault captured one man alive after a five-hour standoff using less-than-lethal weapons.

Faribault police identified him as Hispanic and he is now free on bail.

“He’s alive, and it was the same day Tackle was killed in Minnesota. He can talk about it. Tackle can’t talk about it,” he said. “That’s why we’re upset.”

Crews also cited the white gunman accused of killing seven people at a July 4 parade in the Chicago suburb of Highland Park, Illinois, and the 18-year-old white man accused of fatally shooting 10 black people in a supermarket. Buffalo, New York, in May.

And he compared them to the police killings of Jayland Walker in Akron, Ohio, last month and Thurman Blevins in Minneapolis in 2018, two black men who were fleeing when officers shot them. (AP)

(This is an unedited and auto-generated story from a syndicated news feed, most recent staff may not have changed or edited the content body)




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