MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) - Protestors gathered inside the Hennepin County Government Center Friday afternoon, directing their message at Hennepin County Mike Freeman and the legal system they consider broken. The protestors were upset over Freeman’s decision not to charge the two officers involved in the deadly shooting of Jamar Clark.
"[Freeman] didn't even try to appease us, he just crafted a lie," one protestor said.
Just above the main atrium inside his office, Freeman offered only praise, thanking protestors for their peaceful assembly while also defending his decision.
On Thursday, RayAnn Hayes, the alleged girlfriend of Jamar Clark, surfaced for the first time since the shooting on Nov. 15. She told WCCO she was not Clark’s girlfriend and he never hit her.
"The fact that RayAnn is changing her story now really doesn't change the issues I faced in making the charging decision,” Freeman told Fox 9.
Freeman says what drove his decision were facts backed by evidence. According to him, all three EMTs told investigators that Hayes had identified Clark as her abuser. But all of this, Freeman says, takes a back seat to the overwhelming evidence that shows Clark had reached for an officer’s gun.
"His DNA is all over that gun and he had no business having his hand on that gun, which is why they shot him [and] which is why I didn't prosecute them,” Freeman said.
In recent days, some have also wondered why the two officers involved did not have or use a Taser.
"I don't know whether in this situation a Taser would have helped,” Freeman said.
Freemans said 'what good' a Taser might have done is beside the point,’ his job was to look at the shooting itself.
"You don't have to believe the cops,” Freeman said. “The DNA is there. DNA is truth serum. DNA is all over the gun, the holster and the belt.”
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