Minneapolis intersection South 7th Street and Chicago Avenue, looking westbound (Photo: Google)
By MN Crime Watch, June 10, 2019
You’d think that a vehicle careening onto the sidewalk and purposely trying to run over at least six people outside Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) in downtown Minneapolis would be kind of newsworthy. Wouldn’t you? Especially when that incident followed an earlier shooting in which the shooting victim was taken to HCMC. And extra-especially when the shooting victim, the alleged shooter and the people in the vehicle share some commonalities.
Nope, not in Minneapolis where local mainstream media continues to be incurious in response to certain incidents.
At just after 10:20 p.m. on Saturday, June 8, 2019, an off-duty officer, indicating badge number 6373, radioed to Minneapolis 911 dispatch that he had “just observed a car intentionally try to run over six people, [and that the vehicle] went onto the sidewalk” to do so.
The off-duty officer described the vehicle as looking like a gray Taurus and that it was travelling westbound on South 7th Street from Chicago Avenue, right in front of HCMC. The officer further described that the vehicle was occupied by two Somali males, according to the dispatch audio.
Coincidentally (not really), just hours prior to the alleged attempted homicide-by-vehicle in front of HCMC, there was a shoot-out reported on the 1700 block of North Washington Avenue in Minneapolis in which the suspected shooter was described as a Somali male.
In a subsequent 911 dispatch, emergency medical responders were dispatched to a report of a shooting victim in a vehicle at South 6th Street and 3rd Avenue South, just blocks from HCMC. Police scanner reports indicated that the victim was likely related to the reported shooting in north Minneapolis a few minutes earlier, and that the victim was subsequently transported to HCMC. Further dispatch audio identified the shooting victim as a 27-year-old Somali male who was in critical condition and was going into surgery**.
We know that newsroom types listen to police scanner feeds just like we do (recent examples here, here and here). Yet, when a vehicle swerves onto a sidewalk in front of HCMC, as reported by a police officer on scanner audio, and tries to “intentionally” take out six people - in front of a facility where a shooting victim was transported hours earlier, and at a location where it’s not uncommon for friends and family of shooting victims to gather following a shooting – it doesn’t raise an eyebrow in Twin Cities newsrooms, apparently.
Also concerning is the fact that we’ve received no alert from city officials or the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) that there is a person disposed to homicidal-intent-by-vehicle in Minneapolis.
Not one Twin Cities media outlet has reported on Saturday’s shooting or the incident involving the vehicle trying to run people down in front of HCMC a few hours later. Nor has MPD issued any alerts or information about either incident.
THIS ISN’T NEW
It wasn’t but a mere three weeks ago when our local incurious media had to be cajoled into reporting on another incident in which a group of youths were reportedly wielding “hammers” and threatening people at the East Bank Light Rail Station on the University of Minnesota (U of M) campus.
Police 911 dispatch audio in that incident conveyed a request from U of M police asking for help from both MPD and Metro Transit Police to respond to the incident in which U of M police said that a group of 8-10 males were “chasing people around with hammers,” and that they had “some people injured.”
The Star Tribune, Minnesota’s “newspaper of record,” couldn’t be bothered to report on the incident for four full days, and that was likely only in response to the pressure from the community to do so.
One can’t help but wonder why these incidents are being all but ignored by local media.
** We have the 911 dispatch audio recording that names the June 8 shooting victim but we are withholding public dissemination because the victim hasn’t been publicly identified at this time.
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