MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minnesota’s governor expressed confidence Thursday that state investigators would get to the bottom of a controversial police shooting.
Officer Mohammed Noor killed Justine Damond in Minneapolis five months ago, sparking international outrage.
As the Hennepin County attorney weighs charges, he blamed Bureau of Criminal Apprehension investigators for not doing their job. Damond’s father John Ruszcyk now questions what he calls “gaps” in the state’s work, saying the family just want the answers they were promised.
“We are deeply concerned about the possibility that the initial investigation was not done properly,” Ruszcyk said.
The family of Justine Damond cast doubt on investigators looking into the bride-to-be’s death. Damond’s father spoke at a press conference in Sydney, a week after Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman was caught on camera candidly telling a group of activists he felt investigators “haven’t done their job.”
“All of the information I have is that it is a very rigorous investigation,” Gov. Mark Dayton said.
Dayton responded to the family’s comments at a Capitol briefing Thursday, saying he has confidence in the BCA.
“I don’t know the status — whether it’s concluded at the BCA or gone to the county attorney,” Dayton said. “The county attorney has made his own comments on the remarks he made.”
Freeman has since apologized for the comments he made about the BCA’s investigation. The case was handed over from the BCA to his office in September. Still, there has been no decision on whether Officer Mohammed Noor will be charged with Damond’s death.
“I understand it’s a very distraught family — understandably so,” Dayton said. “They’re in Australia, trying to track what’s actually going on here, so God be with them.”
Damond’s family says the BCA promised a “complete and rigorous” investigation into the shooting. Her father said they are now left wondering.
“We are apprehensive that perhaps the BCA has not fulfilled its promise,” Ruszcyk said.
Despite Freeman’s apology, Damond’s father seemed to commend him for being candid about the case. The county attorney’s office is expected to give an update on possible charges next week.