MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minneapolis officials announced Thursday that the two officers involved in Jamar Clark’s shooting death will not face any disciplinary action.

Minneapolis Police Chief Janée Harteau and Mayor Betsy Hodges announced the findings of the Internal Affairs investigation at a press conference Friday. Harteau said she met with Clark’s family earlier in the day.

Harteau said the investigation determined the incident did not violate any MPD policy and the officers will not be criminally charged.

Clark was shot by police during an incident in north Minneapolis on Nov. 15, 2015. He was taken off life support two days later and died.

Jamar Clark (credit: CBS)

Jamar Clark (credit: CBS)

Police say Clark tried to take an officer’s gun in a struggle during a domestic abuse call, but several witnesses claimed Clark was handcuffed when he was shot in the head by one of the officers involved – Mark Ringgenberg and Dustin Schwarze.

“After an extensive review of this entire incident, I have concluded that these officers did not dictate the outcome of this incident,” Harteau said in a prepared statement at the press conference. “This was an outcome that no one wanted.”

In particular, Harteau defended Officer Ringgenberg’s use of a “takedown maneuver” captured by a camera mounted in the back of an ambulance. The Hennepin County Attorney’s office released the video last March, after deciding not to file charges in the incident.

Video of the takedown maneuver Harteau referenced in the press conference.

“I have determined the takedown maneuver used by Officer Ringgenberg was not a ‘choke hold,’ as described by others,” Harteau said. “Internal Affairs investigators found the officer grabbed the suspect by his upper chest. While this may not be a specific technique that the MPD instructs, that does not mean it was unauthorized.”

In a statement she read after Harteau, Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges expressed support for the MPD’s findings.

“I fully support the chief’s determination in this case, that Officers Schwarze and Ringgenberg did not violate city policies,” she said. “I trust the thorough process that the department followed, and I trust Chief Harteau’s judgment.”

Watch: Full Statements From Chief Harteau And Mayor Hodges

On her Facebook page, Minneapolis NAACP President Nekima Levy-Pounds said that this “is too much,” but at the same time, she’s not surprised.

The group also released a statement saying, in part, “The official statement that no policies were violated strains credulity past the breaking point and raises more questions than answers.” Read the full statement here.

Attorney Bob Sicoli, who represents Ringgenberg, says the officer is happy to put all this behind him, that it’s been a long process and that he’s looking forward to being back on patrol.

“It’s been devastating for them,” Minneapolis Police Union President Lt. Bob Kroll said. “It’s had a tremendous effect on them, their families, and actually, their coworkers.”

The attorney for Jamar Clark’s family is still planning to file a civil lawsuit in the coming weeks.

The shooting sparked a nearly 20-day protest outside of Minneapolis Police’s 4th Precinct building, led by the group Black Lives Matter Minneapolis.

In mid-March, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced that his office – and not a grand jury – would decide if Officers Ringgenberg and Schwarze will face criminal charges for Clark’s death.

On March 30, he announced that his office will not file criminal charges against the officers, saying Clark’s DNA was found on the Ringgenberg’s gun grip, and there was no bruising on his wrists — which both backs the officers’ stories that he was not handcuffed and he had reached for one of their weapons.

Click here to read Chief Harteau’s full statement, and to read the MPD’s full account of the Internal Affairs investigation.

Liz Collin

Comments (21)
  1. bulldog says:

    Regardless of where you stand on this particular case, prosecutorial responsibility for these matters must be placed in the hands of an independent state or federal prosecutor. Considering how important the relationship between police and the local prosecutor is, and must be, there is no way to eliminate all risk of a conflict of interest.

    1. Dave Seavy says:

      Given that the US Attorney’s office extensively reviewed the case, there was indeed an independent prosecutor involved. The department did everything it could to make certain there’d be no claims of bias, etc.

      1. bulldog says:

        “Given that the US Attorney’s office extensively reviewed the case”,,, after the local prosecutor had made his determination, which will almost certainly be viewed unfavorably by some, but I don’t really have an opinion one way or the other on this particular case.

        I think in all officer involved shootings, an independent entity must be the lead on the investigation, I realize that the police don’t want someone looking over their shoulders all the time and I know the officers union really doesn’t like the idea of losing their control in these types of investigations, but I believe it must be that way.

        Just my opinion.

        1. leftofright says:

          your opinion ASSUMes conflict or interest, bias, or racism. How about we all settle down and assume the officers did their job until the facts come out and then when we learn the po po did something wrong, and then are not prosecuted, then awe all band together and protest as one. These ASSUmptions you are making are as bad as the people that riot for a gang banger that was pulling a gun on a police officer and he get’s shot. All credibility is lost on both sides when both sides make such wide assumptions.

          1. bulldog says:

            You’re the making all the assumptions, I just offered my opinion on how best to independently investigate cases that are inevitably accompanied by very high emotions on both sides. Is that a problem for you?

            I will make one assumption, you’re just looking for someone to argue with, I won’t waste my time with you.

            1. leftofright says:

              you made a poor ASSUmption

    2. bulldog is brain dead! says:

      The only good Jamar Clark is a dead one!

  2. AlphabetSoup says:

    So why did Gov Dayton, Mayor Hodges, County Attorney Freeman, Minneapolis city council and many other Democrats allow these Black Lies Matter thugs to cause hundreds of thousands of dollars of damage to the 4th precinct and allow these terrorists to threaten these police. The local liberal news refused to bring their cameras down to the front lines. It took brave conservative blacks to go down there to film all that stuff with their cell phones and upload to youtube. Democrats did nothing. In fact, Democrats encouraged the destruction of property and threats to law enforcement. Hope our dear leaders and BLM burn in h e l l.

  3. Mike Coxin says:

    Yippee, I was waiting for this. Will the protest be near Best Buy? I would like a new tv. Also a few other electronics that I can hock for some dope. Should I call some homeys from St Louis yet or is it to early. It might take a while for them to get here. Oooooh. I can hardly wait!

  4. GreatLakes573 says:

    This is no surprise. The only one who did wrong that night was Jamar Clark.

  5. Steve Nolan says:

    Who’s the idiot that said you can’t get away with murder after murder after murder after murder????

    1. Dan Mack says:

      We want as many of these lawless black criminals alive and on the streets as possible. We want free-range welfare blacks impregnating our babymommas; and prefer not to keep them in cages.
      Our Socialist Welfare Village professional unwed babymomma breeding program depends on keeping these fellows breeding. That is why they are out on the streets.
      Sympathizers in the civil war era thought these lawless blacks were just our half naked more highly pigmented cousins deprived of education and a christian upbringing. It has taken 150 years to demonstrate that giving them good clothes, sending them to school and church does not improve them. Nor has fifty years of welfare, free housing, and food stamps. Nor has preferential treatment in housing, hiring, job promotions and education.

      Our Welfare Village social engineers have been working night and day on an intensive push to import huge new breed stocks of black African Muslims to diversify our black welfare breeders. They breed prodigiously and add the cultural diversity value of traditional Islamic domination and control of women. Here in the Socialist Welfare Village we are committed to doing whatever it takes in our breeding of Socialist Welfare party voters.

    1. bulldog says:

      I welcome you to the group, but Bruce, the regular trolls are not going to be happy to hear from you…. So get ready for the hate!

      Again, welcome!

      1. I get it, they have been use to demanding privilege, even assuming privilege and when they read another opinion, they freak out, bullies, that are being challenged and it’s over. The only left is taking there privilege with, when we age out, that type of hate rots the head and heart.

        I for one, pray for our country and that Live to see the day we face this deep and abiding hate, because, by 2040 to 205, Blacks & Browns, will become the Majority. And I know human-nature, humans will want Revenge and RETRIBUTION, so I pray.

        It’s one of the deeply saddening things about America, heart wrenching-ly saddening,t they are so scared of this coming majority, centuries of avoiding the TRUE History, is will be painful for these retrograde hate merchants.

        This page, kicks me out instead of to the comment page,weird.

        The KKK Has Infiltrated U.S. Police Departments for Decades
        During the Civil Rights movement, one of the KKK’s first orders was to infiltrate police departments around the country.


    2. The KKK Has Infiltrated U.S. Police Departments for Decades
      During the Civil Rights movement, one of the KKK’s first orders was to infiltrate police departments around the country.


  6. Bruce H Scroggins says:

    He got by, but he won’t escape JUDGEMENT, I pray Lord, they both think, they did nothing wrong and have nothing to morn, or even have respect for. They took your Authority Lord, the only AUTHORITY on earth and Killed, unjustly.

    Show us your Peace, and comfort us Lord, we know all power is in your hands and that NONE OF US ESCAPES JUDGEMENT and ETERNITY, none of us.