/  04.06.2022

An officer who shot and killed a Black man while executing a no-knock warrant will not face charges related to the act, according to the Associated Press. On Wednesday (April 6), Minnesota prosecutors declined to press charges against Officer Mark Hanneman after determining he was justified in the fatal shooting of Amir Locke.

Locke was on a couch in his downtown apartment on Feb. 2 when authorities investigating a homicide in St. Paul entered his home using a no-knock warrant and shot him moments later. Per review of Hanneman’s body camera footage, Attorney General Keith Ellison and Hennepin County Attorney Michael Freeman, whose offices looked into the case, noticed Locke pointing a gun at the cops before they rang fire. The prosecutors agreed that Locke may have still been alive if it hadn’t been for the no-knock warrant but admitted there was insufficient information to file any charges against the cop.

“It would be unethical for us to file charges in a case in which we know that we will not able to prevail because the law does not support the charges,” Ellison said.

The decision not to file charges was reportedly made known to Locke’s family before it was announced to anyone else. They’ve since released a statement declaring their continued pursuit of justice.

“[We are] firmly committed to their continued fight for justice in the civil court system, in fiercely advocating for the passage of local and national legislation, and taking every other step necessary to ensure accountability for all those responsible for needlessly cutting Amir’s life far too short,” they wrote.

Locke’s mother, Karen Wells, echoed similar sentiments during a recent press conference, emphasizing that her fight “is not over.”

“In the eyes of me … you are guilty,” she told Hanneman. “I am not going to give up. Continue to have your restless nights, because I know you do.”

 

 

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