Family, Boyfriend Thank Public For Its HelpBy Reg Chapman

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Police have identified the man they arrested in a hit-and-run crash that killed a 24-year-old bicyclist in South Minneapolis last week.

At 10 a.m. Monday, Abdirahman Abdi Ali, 24, turned himself in and was arrested in connection with the death of Jessica Hanson. He had a suspended license at the time of the incident. He is currently in Hennepin County Jail for criminal vehicular operation.

Police say Ali’s vehicle was located Friday evening based on witness information.

According to police, last Wednesday evening, Hanson was riding her bicycle on 28th Street when a vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed on Pleasant Avenue South ran the stop sign and hit her in the intersection. She died of her injuries Friday morning.

Witnesses say the vehicle’s headlights were not on. It sped away while dozens of people ran to Hanson’s aid.

Hanson was on her way to see her boyfriend when the crash happened.

At a media briefing Monday afternoon, Hanson’s cousin and boyfriend stood with police to thank the public for its help.

“We want to thank the witnesses that came forward from the community that gave us information on the vehicle that allowed us to track that car down, which led us to Mr. Abdi Ali,” Minneapolis Police’s Deputy Chief Kris Arneson said.

Hanson’s boyfriend, Justin Beckman, said he can now focus on the memorial to the woman he loved – restoring her bicycle.

“It was a mid-80s Fuji Absolute and she loved it so much,” Beckman said. “I really feel like she deserves to have that bike, regardless of if she ever gets to ride it or not.”

Her family said she lives on in the lives she has saved through organ donations. So far, five people have been given her organs.

According to court records, Ali has been arrested for everything from driving with no proof of insurance and a suspended license. Police will not say anything about his criminal history, but they do say how thankful they are for tips that led to Ali’s arrest.

Reg Chapman