An internal probe into the shooting of Minneapolis police officer Duy Ngo lacked several key elements, including an immediate, thorough neighborhood canvass and detailed questioning of Ngo, according to a four-page memo obtained Sunday by the Star Tribune.
Sources have said that questions over how the memo was handled, not its contents, drove Chief Bill McManus to suspend three top-ranking officers Thursday, the Star Tribune reports. The state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is investigating an allegation that McManus said had criminal overtones. At issue is whether the memo was ordered quashed or destroyed.
The three officers placed on paid leave are the ones who wrote and received the June 16 memo. It was written by Lt. Mike Carlson, addressed to Deputy Chief Lucy Gerold and copied to Capt. Mike Martin.
Carlson’s lawyer, Jim Michels, said the memo shows the department was interested in making sure things were done properly. The memo lists six “areas of concern” that spell out evidence that was either not collected or mishandled.
For example, it said that when the bullet-resistant vest that Ngo was wearing was brought in for testing, crime lab personnel removed items from the pockets without documenting what they took and from where.
The memo also said four bullets that missed Ngo exited his vehicle through a bottom area of the front passenger door. The scene should have been secured until such time as a thorough search could have been done to find the expended rounds, the memo said. One of the expended bullets was found three days later.