Reporting Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A deadly chain of events unfolded in Uptown on Friday.
Police say Terrance Franklin, a burglary suspect, was shot during a struggle with police. He died at the scene. Two officers were also shot, but we don’t yet know who shot them.
Moments after that shooting, and not too far away, Ivan Romero died. A squad SUV responding to the shooting collided with the motorcycle he was driving with his girlfriend. She’s still recovering.
Under her profile on Twitter, Chief Janee Harteau sites three words: commitment, integrity and transparency. The third word is being put to the test this week.
Franklin’s family says they don’t know why he was shot and killed.
His mother, Sheila O’Neal, said Franklin wasn’t one to shoot at police.
“I know he wouldn’t be shooting a firearm,” she said. “That’s not Terrence.”
Police say two of their own suffered gunshot wounds. However, they won’t say if it was Franklin who shot at them, although they did say he started a struggle.
Franklin’s father said his son was a leader who grew up in the church.
“It’s just no closure with what went on May 10,” Walter Franklin said.
And then there’s Romero. An officer responding to the shooting — 30 minutes after it happened — collided with the motorcycle said was driving.
His friend Alyssa Roman says she rode with him often.
“He was not a reckless driver, we drive with him all the time,” Roman said. “This was not his fault, and we know it wasn’t.”
Police say it was Romero who ran into the back of a police SUV. We pulled up the official department policy on officers who are responding to calls. It says officers are not held to traffic statutes in those situations, but “the use of the red lights and siren does not exempt officers from the need for caution nor does it exempt them from criminal or civil liability.”
Police say they extend their sympathy for what happened but still aren’t ready to say exactly how things did happen. They say they are taking their time in an effort to be thorough in these complicated investigations.