Twelve people were shot overnight in a mass shooting in Minneapolis, Minnesota, a city struggling with whether to “defund” and “disband” their police department following the death of George Floyd, a black man who perished while in Minneapolis police custody.
CNN reports that the shooting took place on Hennepin Avenue South, in a district of the city already rocked by protests and riots over the last several weeks. The “melee” left one person dead and at least 11 wounded, though none of the wounded appear to have life-threatening injuries.
Minneapolis police say they have not made an arrest.
“Witnesses said Hennepin Avenue South was also the scene of looting and destruction when violence marred the protests against police brutality and the death of George Floyd, who was killed in the same city,” per CNN. “Some of the same businesses on the street, which had just finished repairing damage from last month, are now left with shattered windows from the shooting.”
Witnesses say that at least two groups of people were shooting at each other, and the shooting, which took place just after midnight, “continued up the block” until the two groups disappeared into the night, leaving a mess — and at least one person dead. The ground was littered with shells, witnesses told local media, from at least three different weapons.
Although the Minneapolis Police Department is currently under siege by city officials, who are doing their best to eliminate law enforcement in the city altogether, officers responded to the shooting.
Local Minneapolis news outlets added that the shooting was captured on social media.
“Screams were audible on a live video posted to Facebook that showed the aftermath at the scene,” a local Minnesota CBS affiliate said Sunday. “Small crowds of people gathered, with some crouched over victims lying on the pavement before police officers on bicycles showed up to attend to them. Splatters of blood on the pavement were visible in the video after the victims were taken to local hospitals — some via ambulance and others in private vehicles, according to the police release.”
Minneapolis police have been battling to stay on the streets following Floyd’s death. The department reportedly has a reputation for using force, and the officer arrested and charged with Floyd’s murder has been involved in several incidents before. In all, four officers have been fired over Floyd’s death and all four have been arrested and are facing charges.
In the wake of protests and riots in Minneapolis, several progressive Minneapolis city council members pressed a vote to “defund” and “disband” the Minneapolis Police Department and funnel the city’s law enforcement budget to social services aimed at poverty and crime prevention, without a plan for addressing ongoing issues with crime in the city. The head of the city council now famously suggested that concerns about burglary and theft were borne from “white privilege.”
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