Reporting Reg Chapman
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Families and investigators want answers as to why two men are dead and three others, including two police officers, are in the hospital.
Police were trying to catch Terrance Franklin Friday afternoon for suspicion of burglary. They say he hid in a house near 27th Street and Bryant Avenue in Minneapolis.
Police say officers followed Franklin into the home, where he attacked them and a police dog.
According to authorities, it is unclear what happened during the struggle that resulted in Franklin grabbing a MP5 submachine gun from one of the officers.
In the aftermath, Officers Michael Meath and Ricardo Muro were shot, and Franklin was killed.
Soon after the officer shootings, a police squad en route to the scene collided with a motorcycle in an intersection, killing the driver – Ivan Romero.
Police say this accident was the result of a motorcycle striking the back of a squad car as it went through the intersection of 26th Street and Blaisdell Avenue. They say the squad car had its lights and sirens on when the accident happened, and the officer was driving below the speed limit as it reached the intersection.
Romero’s girlfriend was riding with him at the time, and is currently in satisfactory condition at HCMC.
Romero’s friend, Alyssa Roman, says he was a cautious rider. She’s not angry about what happened, but just sad.
“His girlfriend was on the back of the bike – the person that he loves the most in his life,” Roman said. “He’s not going to be reckless with that.”
The family of Terrance Franklin stood in the sanctuary New Beginning Baptist Tabernacle Church to express their sorrow and anger about what happened.
Police say Franklin attacked a police dog and other officers before he was killed.
Franklin’s mother, Shelia O’Neal, has a hard time believing what happened.
“I know he wouldn’t be shooting at the police. I know he wouldn’t be shooting no firearm. That’s not Terrance,” O’Neal said.
Franklin’s father, Walter Franklin, says they have not been allowed to see his remains.
“I was asked to go in to verify my child and I was denied that,” Franklin said.
O’Neal says she is in the dark when it comes to circumstances surrounding her son’s death.
“I haven’t got any answers. Don’t know what happened, what occurred,” O’Neal said. “And I was told yesterday that I would be able to see him this morning. I haven’t seen him.”
Both families are hurting tremendously and hope to hear something from investigators about what happens next.
Minneapolis Police released a statement Saturday night asking for the public’s patience as they work around the clock to provide a thorough and complete review of the shooting and accident.
Chief Harteau says the department will respond with facts and will not react to speculation.