Friday, April 03, 2009

This has an unpleasant odor !

The paper this morning was full of some sad stories but this one grabbed me.

On July 22, 2006 a Minneapolis Police officer shot 19 year old Fong Lee eight times killing him,
after seeing what he thought was an exchange of drugs outside of Cityview elementary school on the north side of Minneapolis, .
Two days later at a news conference the police displayed a pistol they say was found next to Fong Lee's body.
This week the debate over Fong Lee's death resumed when a law suit was filed by the family alleging that the gun was planted.
It turns out the gun had been stolen in a 2004 burglary and recovered shortly afterwards and was held in a police property room until it was found by Fong Lees body.

Was it planted?

The police say no, they say the gun was mistakenly identified when it was recovered the first time.
I want to give the police the benefit of the doubt but I find it hard to understand why a 19 year old running from a police officer would need to be shot in the back eight times,twice while he was already on the ground.


Riot Kitty said...

Well what are the police going to say - "We planted it because we realized we fucked up shooting an unarmed innocent kid who happens not to be white"?

There was a story like this practically every month when I lived in NYC. It makes me ill just thinking about it.

runningwmn said...

Tim Dolan hasn't smelled right to me since he became the new police chief, considering his propensity to smear black police officers. As someone who has been on a few "ride-alongs" with a couple different Minneapolis cops, I have witnessed first hand the racism that exists within the ranks of their police department. White cops would would openly refer to African Americans in a derogative way as "the homies" and even slam their fellow officers who didn't happen to be white. Sadly this story doesn't surprise me. . . . .

Michael Manning said...

Oh, Green Tea: This is giving me flashbacks to The Mid-West city I was born in. But them, two wees ago a shooting happened 10 minutes from here. I don't like guns at all. Call me naive, but I was raised to believe "If you live your life right, you don't need a gun". I don't know what to make of this story. I just thing it's sad.

Anonymous said...

why do you want to give the police the benefit of the doubt, this scenario is very common in Minneapolis, now maybe something will be done about it considering the victim was not black. Minneapolis cops are full of hate and anger, you can see it in their faces, feel it in their presence and smell it in their persona and ora. Look at them the next time you're at the Aldi or Cub Foods in North Minneapolis, or stand outside of a club in which all black people have attended and witness us getting sprayed like roaches with Mace in cans the size of Aqua Net hairspray THEY HATE US!

Green tea said...

I live in an inner ring suburb,
(next time sign your name)
We have a very caring Police Department in a large multiracial community.
Our Chief would never allow the things Dolan does.
I personally haven't seen the racism,
so that is why I feel I should wait till the investigation is over.
As far as Mpls Police department goes, I only know second hand information.

runningwmn said...

I have seen first hand exactly what you are talking about. Like I said, I went on a couple ride alongs in the 4th precinct of Mpls.
and I lived on the north side for 12 years. I've also been the passenger on a couple of occasions where the friend that was diving happened to be African American. As a result I witnessed first hand how dramatically different an African American driver is treated by a Minneapolis Police officer, then how I've been treated when being the driver all by myself. I can tell you that I was terrified by the cops behavior.
I also went on ride alongs on the North East side, (I can't remember that precinct) and I never witnessed the racism I saw over in the 4th. But the cops over North East were older, more professional, and just may have been better at behaving themselves in front of a ride-along. Unfortunately your average white grandma type who lives in the suburbs never sees that kind of stuff so it is harder for them to immediately believe it. Not that there is anything wrong with being a white suburban grandma type. (Actually, I am now a white suburban grandma type.) ha ha
Its just that obviously their life experience is going to be a lot different and our experiences are what shape our perception. Even when something blatent is caught on tape, like the Rodney King incident, most white people who are not racist will of course be outraged, but they tend to comfort themselves by dismissing it as an isolated incident because their own life experience just doesn't reflect those images. When the majority population goes on thinking that "those things don't really happen that often" it allows the racist cops to keep getting away with it. Unfortunately the best cops get the better higher paying jobs in the suburbs, and the bottom ranking cops who can't get a job anywhere else end up on the north side of Mpls.

Green tea said...

Your right Runningwoman I just don't get to the 4th precinct area of Mpls.
But I did witness some pretty extreme behavior by the St.Paul Police during the Republican Convention last summer.
I don't think it had anything to do with racism.
Even white female journalists were being thrown to the ground.
I just happen to live in a community
that has done it's best to make sure they have ethnic officers. We have about 1/3
of the Liberian and Mong immigrants who have come to Minnesota living here.
Our Chief is awesome, ask the Mayor? :D