Minneapolis Police Officer Mohamed Noor has hired an attorney and issued a statement just two days after shooting and killing Australian native Justine Damond in the alley behind her home as she talked to his partner through the window of their police vehicle.
Damond was in the fact the person who called police in the first place to report a possible assault in the alley.
Details about the shooting as few and far between right now as investigators remain tight lipped about their progress. However, it appears this incident surprised even Noor’s partner. According to a local media report by KARE11:
According to police sources, Noor shot across his partner and out the window of the squad car, striking Damond. When Noor opened fire, his partner was “stunned,” according to the source.
Damond’s death has officially been ruled a homicide by the local coroner and it was revealed by other sources that she was shot multiple times. Dispatch audio documents some of the exchange between the two officers and their dispatcher immediately after the shooting.
According to the Daily Mail:
The call begins just before 11.28pm on Saturday night, when an officer can be heard saying there is a ‘female screaming behind the building’.
The officer says they are performing CPR after ‘shots fired and one down’ and call for other units, including medical, to come to ‘Code 3, Washburn and 53rd St’.
‘No suspects at large,’ the cop tells the dispatcher after around a minute.
Here is the full statement released by Officer Noor:
‘Officer Noor extends his condolences to the family and anyone else who has been touched by this event. He takes their loss seriously and keeps them in his daily thoughts and prayers.’
‘He came to the United States at a young age and is thankful to have had so many opportunities. He takes these events very seriously because, for him, being a police officer is a calling. He joined the police force to serve the community and to protect the people he serves. Officer Noor is a caring person with a family he loves and he empathizes with the loss others are experiencing.’
‘The current environment for police is difficult, but Officer Noor accepts this as part of his calling. We would like to say more, and will in the future. At this time, however, there are several investigations ongoing and Officer Noor wants to respect the privacy to the family and asks the same in return during this difficult period.’
In an interview on Good Morning America Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges expressed her concern that the officer’s body cameras were turned off during the shooting, despite the fact that they should have been on while the officers were responding to an active call.
‘You know, I fought hard to make sure that we have body cameras. They’re a very powerful tool, they’re not an infallible tool, but they’re an important tool in 21st century policing and I don’t know why they weren’t turned on.
‘I don’t know what happened. That’s one of the key questions that we have as the investigations move forward.’
Damond’s family in the United States as well as Australia have both issued statements celebrating her life as well as demanding answers and justice for the shooting.