‘Loud sound’ moments before Justine Damond shot by Minneapolis officer

MinnPost photo by Jana Freiband
A makeshift memorial to Justine Damond.

The Star Tribune’s Andy Mannix has the latest on Justine Damond’s killing: “Police officers Matthew Harrity and Mohamed Noor eased their patrol vehicle into the alley of the quiet south Minneapolis neighborhood late Saturday, the squad’s lights off as they responded to a report of a possible assault. Near the end of the alley, a ‘loud sound’ startled Harrity. A moment later, Justine Damond, the woman who had called 911, approached the driver’s side of the squad car. Suddenly a surprise burst of gunfire blasted past Harrity as Noor fired through the squad’s open window, striking Damond in the abdomen. … That rudimentary account of her death, released Tuesday … is based on an interview that Harrity …  gave to BCA investigators..”

An AP story looks at Australian reaction to the story. It ain’t good.  “Half a world from where an Australian woman was shot dead by a Minneapolis police officer, Tuesday’s front-page headline in her hometown Sydney newspaper summarized Australia’s reaction in blunt terms: ‘AMERICAN NIGHTMARE.’ In Justine Ruszczyk’s native country, news of the meditation teacher’s baffling death has dominated the airwaves, newspapers and websites for days, feeding into Australians’ long-held fears about America’s notorious culture of gun violence.”

And a Reuters story by Chris Kenning looked into when police do and don’t turn on their body cameras. “There is only spotty national evidence available about how frequently police fail to turn on cameras. An Arizona State University study in 2014 found fewer than half of police incidents in Phoenix were recorded. At least 14 people were killed by officers wearing body cams that were either not turned on or inoperative since 2014, the ACLU said in December. Even so, that was a tiny fraction of police-involved shootings. Jim Pasco, a senior adviser with the Fraternal Order of Police, said noncompliance among police is not widespread, and a Pew Research Center report earlier this year found 66 percent of police supported the use of body cameras.”

In other news, MPR’s Brian Bakst reports: “A former Minnesota Lottery executive has been paid about $54,000 to settle a wrongful termination lawsuit under terms made public Tuesday. Johnene Canfield was second-in-command at the lottery when she was fired in 2015 amid a series of incidents involving public intoxication. She had sued claiming discrimination. … The payout includes the amount to be turned over to her attorney for his fees. The state admitted no wrongdoing, and both sides said in the stipulation it was being done to head off additional costs from legal proceedings.”

Seems like a great PR move. For the PiPress, Bob Shaw writes: “For the first time, 3M Co. is refusing to pay cleanup costs of polluting chemicals it manufactured. The company announced on Monday that it will not pay $377,000 for filters, bottled water and other costs of dealing with chemicals found in drinking water. The state Pollution Control Agency billed 3M for those costs — the kind of expenses that 3M has paid in the past. But this time, 3M says that the parts-per-trillion amounts in water could have come from fire extinguishers or other sources, and not necessarily the dump sites where it placed the chemicals. The company has already spent more than $100 million on cleanup efforts. Now it is saying, in effect, enough is enough.”

The Strib’s Jim Buchta writes:Home sales — and prices — reached a new high in the Twin Cities area last month, but the dearth of listings continued and may soon put a brake on deals. During June, there were 7,430 closings, 2.2 percent more than last year and a record high, the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors reported Tuesday. The median price of those closings was $259,000, a 7 percent increase and another new high. … Sales are being driven by a combination of factors, including near-record low mortgage rates, a thriving economy and an increase in new households.”

Here’s something you don’t read very often: a refund on insurance: Selam Berhea of the PiPress reports, “More than 1,600 Minnesota drivers will be receiving refunds from Farmers Insurance Exchange after the insurance firm was accused of unfair pricing practices. The Minnesota Commerce Department examined Farmers Insurance Exchange’s pricing practices and found that the company had been charging renters higher auto rates than homeowners, the agency said in a statement released Tuesday. It is illegal in Minnesota to set auto insurance rates based on residential status.”

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Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Emily Sojourn on 07/19/2017 - 10:35 am.

    Thanks MinnPost

    Well, thank goodness for MinnPost. Assuming (I now see erroneously) that MinnPost wouldn’t have anything on this story quite as up-to-date as the Strib, I went onto said website to get the latest. I rarely visit startribune.com anymore because I find it a thoroughly junky site— all those flashing ads making it look like the Las Vegas of websites. It appears now that those ads trigger my browser to refresh every few seconds and, when that happens, I get bumped down to the bottom of the page and have to scroll back up to where I was reading. Four seconds later, it happens again.

    With the Strib’s basic functionality compromised for me, I appreciate that MinnPost features a clean, casino-free viewing experience. Thanks!

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