MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — “What needs to be done?” That’s the question many are asking right now in St. Paul.
Tuesday afternoon, St. Paul police body camera video was released that shows Officer Steve Mattson being threatened by a man with a knife. Mattson then shoots and kills the man, later identified as 31-year-old Ronald Davis.READ MORE: Sign Bearing George Floyd's Name Unveiled At 38th And Chicago
So far this year, 21 people have been shot and killed in St. Paul. Some of those closely affected are trying to find a way forward.
As hard as it is to watch, Rev. Runney D. Patterson has watched the video of the deadly encounter over and over again.
“Seeing the video yesterday was very emotional because someone lost their life. Could have been the other way around,” Patterson said.
Over the past few weeks, the New Hope Baptist pastor says he’s worked with Davis’s family.
“My heart goes out to his family his mother who came here from Chicago. I’ve been able to minister and have conversation with his wife. Makes me wonder what was happening to make him put his self on that position,” Patterson said.
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The pastor who has led funerals for 30 young men over the past 15 years says it’s important for everyone in the community to watch out for one another’s mental health. He says his own has been tested.
“A lot of people think we pastors are like robots, we have no feeling. But this is very emotional. It’s a mental warfare for me because I continue to wonder when is this madness gonna stop,” he said.
Kalin Jackson has the same question. Her son was shot in St. Paul in July.
“Thank God my son survived, but it’s still impacting our lives to this very day and moment,” Jackson said. “And then when I hear of other shootings other kids losing their lives, other kids giving their lives now to prisons, killing someone else, I just relive it all over again.”
She believes open conversations are key. The reverend says neighbors of all backgrounds need to get together and get to know each other.
“I guess if I say any good can and will come out of this, hopefully it will bring all of us to the table. The black community, white community, city leaders, the police force,” she said.MORE NEWS: Sign Bearing George Floyd's Name Unveiled At 38th And Chicago: 'This Is Just Another Step Forward'
Rev. Patterson is holding an open meeting Thursday at New Hope Church from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. He wants anyone to come out and talk about peace.