As the whole world knows by now, North Minneapolis community members organized by Black Lives Matters are occupying Plymouth Avenue in front of the Minneapolis Police Department's Fourth Precinct following the shooting of Jamal Clark by a police officer.
Clark later died from the gunshot wound. Accounts of the circumstances by police and witnesses contrast, with the head of the police union claiming that Clark had control of one officer's sidearm, while civilians on the scene last Sunday claim Clark was handcuffed when he was shot in the head. (Black Lives Matter Minneapolis has posted a blurry phone video on its Facebook page in which Clark's hands do appear to be handcuffed behind his back shortly after the shot was fired).
The shooting has been ruled a homicide.
Now a prominent Republican state lawmaker and former lawman has shared his opinion of the dispute with his Democratic colleagues and their staff, according to an emailed document a source forwarded to Bluestem.
Saturday morning, Minnesota House Public Safety Chair Tony Cornish, R-Vernon Center, sent file to this distribution list:
From: "Tony Cornish" <Rep.Tony.Cornish@house.mn>
Date: November 21, 2015 at 5:03:33 AM CST
To: "All DFL Representatives" <All DFL Representatives.House3PO.LegDom@house.mn>, "All DFL Staff" <All DFL Staff.House3PO.LegDom@house.mn>
Cornish also posted the text on his Facebook page on Saturday morning, asking friends to share on their own pages. As of this time, 398 people had shared the post. Here's a pdf of the document he emailed Democratic state lawmakers and staff:
We'll give Cornish credit for one thing: he admits he'd feel regret at the death. That's more than union head Robert Kroll would concede last night on TPT Almanac. Kroll also claimed that "many" of those protesting are "outside" of the community and on the payroll of the SEIU. [Update: Kroll has come to public attention for extreme behavior and outlandish statements since 1995, according to this 2007 report in City Pages].
The Minnesota ACLU's overview, The Hard Truth of the Minneapolis Black Lives Matter Protests: Communities of Color Have No Trust in Their Police Force, offers a counterpoint to the long blue line.
Photo: One of Tony Cornish's Throw Back Thursday photos, via Facebook.
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