Beeks family still seeking justice for slain grandmother

- More than a month after a 58-year-old grandmother was caught in the crossfire of a north Minneapolis shooting, her family is still looking for answers.

With feet to the streets and fliers in hand on Saturday, approximately 35 of Birdell Beeks’ friends and family sought one thing: to bring the 58-year-old grandmother’s killer to justice.

“My mother was the innocent bystander on 21st and Penn,” said Sa’Lesha Beeks.

Beeks shared the details about her mother’s tragic slaying on May 26 to anyone who’d stop and listen.

“This morning, I actually prayed over my Mom’s urn and said, ‘give us strength today and give us hope,” said Sa’Lesha.

The effort is also a call to action.

“I would like to see the community step up,” said Sa’Lesha.

At each door, car and gate Sa’Lesha visited, she issued the same plea.

“Until we unite and come together as one, more of this is going to continue,” she said.

Sa’Lesha’s hope is that anyone with even the slightest information leading to an arrest in Birdell’s case will come forward.

“No information is too small,” she said.

Anthijuan Beeks is Sa’Lesha’s cousin and a former Minneapolis police officer. Birdell was his aunt.

 “We have to get them to understand and believe that there’s a difference between a snitch and a concerned community member,”Anthijuan said of the North Minneapolis community.

As it stands, Minneapolis Police are still searching for a suspect.

Marches and rallies have been held in North Minneapolis since Birdell’s late May shooting death. 

Outrage and disdain have been expressed.

Neither seems to be a match against the “no snitching” culture permeating this side of the city’s streets.

“Once they report this information, they take the power away from these individuals that are out here terrorizing these blocks, these streets, this community,” said Anthijuan Beeks.

Anthijuan and Sa’Lesha were joined by Neasha Griffin in search of answers.

Sixteen-year-old Griffin sat in the minivan right next to her grandmother as she was shot and killed.

 “It’s definitely [been] hard,” Griffin told FOX 9.

Griffin and the Beeks are also disappointed community organizations have yet to join them in the effort to solve Birdell’s case.

“The whole ‘Black Lives Matter’ thing? It matters when it’s black on white, but it doesn’t matter when it’s black on black and that’s a problem,” said Griffin, shaking her head.

“They’re not concerned with the fact that we as blacks are killing each other on a daily basis,” said Sa’Lesha Beeks.

With strong resolve to find Birdell’s shooter, the Beeks will continue to canvas the neighborhoods.

They have no plans to stop until a suspect is in custody.

“It could’ve been your grandma, too, and I’m pretty sure you would want the same results if somebody did this to your family. So they definitely need to come out and say something,” said Griffin.

Mica Mary Jane, a Black Lives Matter Minneapolis spokeswoman, tells FOX 9 she is in talks with the organization’s steering committee.

Mary Jane said Black Lives Matter Minneapolis will “most likely be reaching out to the family soon.”

If you have any information about Birdell Beeks’ case that could lead to an arrest, you can call police or CRIMESTOPPERS at 1(800) 222-TIPS (8477).


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