Police Tear Down Protest Camp at Minneapolis’ 4th Precinct
Officers told about 50 demonstrators outside the Fourth Precinct to disperse about 4 a.m. and began tearing down tents about 15 minutes later.
Officers in riot gear broke down an encampment early Thursday outside a Minneapolis police precinct where protesters have been demonstrating for nearly two weeks over the fatal shooting of a black man by police.
Officers told about 50 demonstrators outside the Fourth Precinct to disperse about 4 a.m. and began tearing down tents about 15 minutes later. City dump trucks carried away tents and supplies. Demonstrators headed by the local Black Lives Matter group have gathered at the site since the Nov. 16 death of 24-year-old Jamar Clark following a confrontation with police a day earlier.
Police spokesman Scott Seroka said there were a few arrests, but provided no details.
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The Star Tribune reported police presented an eviction notice to protesters that said the department remains steadfast to its commitment to help facilitate demonstrations outside the Fourth Precinct. "It is a city building within city grounds and people have the right to peacefully demonstrate or protest," the notice said. But it said that neither structures nor fires will be allowed on city property and that access to the police station must remain open.
Several precinct neighbors upset about noise, vandalism and blocked streets voiced their concerns at a City Council safety committee meeting Wednesday. Patricia Anderson said her daughter's car window has been smashed, bricks have been taken from a wall on her property and she's having trouble sleeping. She said she wants the protesters to leave.
Police say they were responding to an assault call on Nov. 15 in which Clark was a suspect and arrived to find Clark interfering with paramedics who were trying to treat the victim. Police say a scuffle followed and Clark was shot. Some community members have alleged Clark was handcuffed when he was shot, but police dispute this. State and federal investigations are underway.