[UPDATE – June 23, 2020: Minneapolis Police have updated their reporting on the Uptown incident, and have said that Cody Pollard was actually shot and killed near 7th Street and First Avenue in downtown Minneapolis. What follows is the story as it originally ran.]
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — ShotSpotter technology has picked up more than 1,600 gunshots in Minneapolis in the past 30 days.
Nine people were shot within four hours Monday in three separate shootings, witin about a two-mile radius in north Minneapolis.
The numbers show that there have been over 100 people shot in Minneapolis since the death of George Floyd. Early Monday evening, Mayor Jacob Frey and Police Chief Medaria Arradondo called on additional help to end the violence.
“It will not be tolerated by our police department, by our chief, by me,” Frey said.
Just after 2:30 p.m., four people were shot near the 1600 block of Morgan Avenue North. At about 4:09 p.m., four more people were shot at West Broadway and North Lyndale avenues. At 6:41 p.m., another person was shot near North 25th Avenue and North 4th Street.
In addition to Monday’s shootings, one man was killed and another was critically wounded in a double stabbing in downtown Minneapolis.
The shootings prompted Frey to call on the Hennepin County Sheriff’s office, the Minnesota State Patrol and others for help.
“That’s the ATF, that’s the Secret Service, that’s the FBI for investigative purposes,” Frey said.
Chief Arradondo said the victims on Monday, and the majority of victims in Uptown over the weekend, are Black men.
“We are having people settle their disputes by picking up a gun and shooting,” Arradondo said. “We will see higher visibility from different law enforcement partners, but we will also see a great increase in the intelligence sharing with all of our partners here.”
Police officials tell WCCO officers are getting pushback if they do answer calls right now, or if they don’t. But they plan on continuing to answer calls when people need help. Citizens are also encouraged to film responding officers with cellphones. Chief Arradondo believes if more people use their phones during police encounters, there will be more accountability.
Early Sunday morning, a young father was killed and 11 others suffered non-life threatening injuries in a mass shooting in the Uptown business district near Hennepin and Lagoon avenues. Dustin Sanchez is a longtime Uptown resident.
“It was pop, pop, pop, pop, pop. And I was just kind of sitting there watching it, and I had two shots go past my head,” Sanchez said.
Several businesses were also struck by bullets.
“I came over here and helped him clean everything up. We were pulling projectiles out of the walls from where they hit. We were cleaning up glass, cleaning up blood,” Sanchez said. “It’s just stupid, it’s not needed here anymore.”
Sanchez, a father or four, says his family chose the area because of walkability and convenience. Lately, he says it’s been a hotbed of tension and frustration.”
“There is like zero authority here. We’ve called 911 a couple of times and they told us we were on our own because they don’t have people to come down and help. There is no help with city officials or police right now. There are literally citizens trying to keep people off our block right now, keep people off our street,” Sanchez said. “I just want to have a family and live here and enjoy here in our community, watch it continue to grow.”
Kory Harris is another concerned neighbor.
“Have some common sense,” Harris said. “There’s no need for the violence, we need to come together.”
City leaders say officers responding to shootings have had bottles and rocks thrown at them. But at Broadway and Lyndale avenues, community activists urged people to partner with police. Lisa Clemons and Jamar Nelson are with the group A Mother’s Love. They want to work with law enforcement to end violence and are upset that Minneapolis City Council members want the department disbanded.
“I absolutely disagree with saying abolish the police. Right now we are living in lawless territory because we have told people to not have respect for the police,” Clemons said. “I think Lisa Bender, president of the city council, should step down immediately.”
Nelson says Bender’s call for disbandment is “irresponsible.”
“To abolish the police department, to disband them irreparably harms the Black and Brown people,” Nelson said.
WCCO reached out to Bender Monday about the increasing violence, but she has not responded.
Arradondo is not yet releasing details on who the shooter was in Uptown early Sunday morning.