Grandmother in minivan shot, killed in north Minneapolis

- Minneapolis police are investigating the deadly shooting of a woman sitting in her minivan near Penn Avenue N. and 21st Avenue N. around 6 p.m. Thursday. Officers responded to a reported shooting and found the woman sitting in the minivan with a gunshot wound. She was taken to North Memorial Medical Center where she later died.

Family members identified the victim as Birdell Beeks. Her granddaughter was with her at the time, but managed to survive the barrage of bullets.

Possible suspects were found at a home on the 2100 block of Oliver Avenue North and several people there were arrested. Homicide detectives were interviewing suspects at City Hall. 

Annette Jackson lives in the neighborhood and was minutes away from heading to the bus stop for a trip to church when gunfire erupted.

“I’ve said it before. It got too close to home. Too close to home because it could have been me. Could have been me,” Jackson said. “Black Lives Matter. I agree with it to a certain point, but we’re killing each other. We need to stop. If we think Black Lives Matter, we need to do something to improve it.”

Minneapolis Police Chief Jane Harteau announced Friday that the department will continue to focus resources in high violence areas of the city that have seen a spike in gun violence this year. That includes an additional dozen officers on the north side’s 4th Precinct starting June 12.

“Officers will be conducting focused directed patrol in this area in the coming days. Further neighborhood canvassing will also be done by officers," Minneapolis police said in a news release. "People are strongly encouraged to speak with officers as they spend time in the area with any information to this crime or other community concerns."

Anyone with information is asked to call the Minneapolis Police Department Tipline at 612-692-TIPS (8477).  You may also call CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (TIPS). 

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Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges called the violence "unacceptable," and posted a blog about action items for the City and Minneapolis police.

"In my 2016 State of the City Address, I talked about gun violence, especially on the north side. I spoke directly to the people of North Minneapolis, especially those most affected by this violence, and here I say again: I hear you and your city hears you. No resident in any neighborhood should have to endure gun violence. I condemn it. It has no place in North Minneapolis or anywhere else in our city," Hodges wrote. "We have, over the past few months, released information about what we are doing – proactively and reactively – to combat violent crime. All of this information has been publicly available, and here I want to collect it and share it here."

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