Once again, Minneapolis is full of unrest after weeks of protesting over the death of Winston Smith. To maintain order in the city, the governor has called in the National Guard.
Beginning of June
Unrest in the city has continued off and on over the last years. Most recently, the unrest can be attributed to the shooting of Winston Smith.
Smith was wanted for unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon. According to KSTP, the U.S. Marshall’s service tried to arrest Smith on a state warrant.
Smith refused to cooperate with the officers while he sat in his parked car. He pulled out his weapon, leading officers to shoot him.
The officers administered aid. However, Smith died on site. Following the shooting, protestors set dumpsters on fire, vandalized business, and caused mayhem in the Uptown neighborhood.
Versions of Events
According to Fox9, police officials say that the evidence points to Smith firing his weapon before the officers shot him. However, friends and family members disagree.
Unfortunately, officers did not have body cameras. A woman who was with Smith claims he never had a gun.
Family members are determined to clear his name. Another trigger was a protester getting hit with an SUV. Authorities believe that the man driving was under the influence and driving very fast.
Need For The National Guard
After this incident, Governor Walz received a letter from Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey asked for help. He asked, “the state make Minnesota National Guard assets available to assist in ensuring calm and order throughout the city, without immediately being deployed.”
This is the fifth time since May 25, 2020, Frey has had to request this kind of help. The Governor immediately sent word to the National Guard to get ready.
Police Chief Medaria Arradondo wants the National Guard to be paired with local law enforcement. He also asked that they be used for protection details and traffic control instead of pitting them against the protestors.
While the city may only want the National Guard to be on standby, it seems as though they struggle to maintain any kind of order. Civil unrest will continue until protestos and riotors understand that their actions are not productive.