*Activists in Minneapolis are calling for Ramona Dohman to step down as head of the U.S. Marshals Service in the state over the handling of the fatal police shooting of Winston Smith Jr., a father of three.
Smith’s death has sparked several days of protests and backlash over the marshals not wearing body cameras during the encounter. As reported by The Root, “investigators said there is no video evidence available to determine what led up to the shooting. Not only were the task force members not wearing body-cams, but they aren’t allowed to wear them,” the outlet writes.
Here’s more from the outlet:
So it’s no surprise that members of the Minneapolis community and the family of 32-year-old Winston Boogie Smith Jr.—a Black man who was fatally shot in the city Thursday by members of a U.S. Marshals Service task force—aren’t buying the authorities’ narrative that it was a clean shoot.
The Washington Post reports that U.S. Marshals and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA), which is investigating the shooting, said that Smith had a warrant for a felony firearms violation. The task force aptly known as the North Star Fugitive Task Force (*face-palm* Jesus, Mary and slave patrols) said that Smith didn’t comply with their orders and that he “produced a handgun resulting in task force members firing upon the subject.”
“The U.S. Marshal Service currently does not allow the use of body cameras for officers serving on its North Star Fugitive Task Force,” the bureau said. “There is no squad camera footage of the incident.”
The BCA said in a statement that Smith fired a gun from inside his car, but the woman who was in a vehicle when Winston was shot said she never saw a gun on him or in the vehicle, her attorneys said Thursday, per NBC News.
“The system in this state is fundamentally flawed, and the federal oversight is also fundamentally flawed,” said Jaylani Hussein, executive director for Minnesota’s Council on American-Islamic Relations, at a news conference Tuesday. “We need transparency and accountability.”
Smith, according to a statement from the agency, was parked in a car when he “failed to comply with officers’ commands” and “produced a handgun resulting in task force members firing upon the subject,” the statement said.
Demonstrators have been protesting in Minneapolis almost every day since Smith was killed.
Check out the video report above.