Two MN Police Shootings Viewed Through Racial Lens

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The Washington Post examines the differing reactions of police and the community to recent shootings by police officers in the Twin Cities. In one, a cop shot a black man. In another, a black cop shot a white woman. In the second case, Officer Mohamed Noor’s fatal shooting of Justine Damond two weeks ago has strained Minneapolis, forcing new alliances and revealing fissures. The police union has been largely silent in defending one of its own. The city’s white, female mayor — facing a difficult reelection bid in which policing has become a primary issue — demanded and received the resignation of the white, female police chief.

Local Somali American leaders have distanced their community from Noor, expressing dismay about news coverage and public chatter that tied the Somali American officer’s actions to the entire community and culture. And while some white residents long have been engaged in calls for police reforms, advocates say their numbers have suddenly grown. The newspaper contrasts those reactions with those that followed the contentious death of Philando Castile, who was shot by police during a traffic stop in a St. Paul suburb in July 2016. Some say the race of the victim prompted different reactions.

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