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Car Caravan Rolls Through Downtown Minneapolis In Protest Of Amir Locke Killing

Originally published on Feb. 4, 2022

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- A car caravan protesting the police killing of Amir Locke blocked traffic briefly Friday night in downtown Minneapolis.

The caravan stopped in front of the Bolero Flats building, located at 11th Street and Marquette Avenue. Locke, a Black man, was fatally shot there Wednesday morning by Minneapolis police officer Mark Hanneman, who was part of a no-knock raid on the apartment.

The protesters called for Hanneman to be fired, arrested and charged with murder. Earlier Friday, Locke's family made the same demands at Minneapolis City Hall.

"We're here for them," said protester Courtney Armborst, referring to Locke's family. "This is how we show we're here for them. We'll stay in the streets until we get justice, period."

She said that Interim Police Chief Amelia Huffman and Mayor Jacob Frey need to resign for how they've responded to the shooting so far. They're "sugar-coating" what happened," she said.

"You cry at a funeral and then don't do anything for us," Armborst said. "It's time for you to go, too."

Samantha Pree-Stinson, a member of the Minneapolis Board of Estimate and Taxation, said the mayor and police chief ran from questions Thursday night, when they held a press conference following the release of body-camera footage of Locke's death. She called the mayor's behavior "abhorrent.

She also criticized the mayor for campaigning on getting on reforming no-knock warrants when this type of warrant led to Locke's death just weeks into his second term.

In 2020, the mayor and the former police chief updated the department's no-knock warrant policy, specifying that officers need to announce themselves as police prior to cross the threshold. In the body-camera footage released in the Locke shooting, it appears that officers announced themselves as they are crossing the threshold, less than 10 seconds before Locke was mortally wounded.

On Friday afternoon, Frey issued a moratorium on no-knock warrants in Minneapolis, unless under an extreme circumstance. Pree-Stinson believes the mayor needs to go further.

"We should have a moratorium on the use of deadly force," she said. "We should call an emergency meeting to amend our budget."

Earlier in the day, Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison announced that his office would help review the case. Ellison previously led teams which successfully prosecuted Derek Chauvin and Kim Potter, police officers convicted of killing George Floyd and Daunte Wright respectively.

Another protest is planned for Saturday afternoon at the Hennepin County Government Center.

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