Event remembers Justine Damond, calls for changes in police protocol

Several social justice groups gathered Sunday to mark not only the one year anniversary of Justine Damond’s death, but also recognize others who have died at the hands of police.

Dozens were on hand at the location in south Minneapolis where Damond was shot and killed by Minneapolis police offficer Mohamed Noor one year ago.  Noor has since been charged with third degree murder and second degree manslaughter.

Emotions ranged from anger to sadness to determination as everyone attending agreed the policing system is broken. 

“Justine was the kind of person that would want a police force that cares about the health and well-being of its own residents and its members.  A police force that enforces de-escalation and racial inclusivity over violence and fear mongering,” said the head of the group Justice for Justine Sarah Kuhnen. 

Michelle Gross with Communities United Against Police Brutality recognized some positive changes had been made at various police departments.  She said the St. Paul police have adopted a new use of force policy and added Minneapolis is also making positive changes. 

“Minneapolis is in the midst of adopting a training program called “epic.”  It’s a peer intervention training that involves police officers stopping each other from engaging in harmful conduct,” said Gross.

Gross also said there’s a lot more work to do. 

Mohammad Noor is no longer with the MPD. He is due in court in September.