Justine Ruszczyk Damond's family 'satisfied' with Noor trial verdict, but critical of police
MINNEAPOLIS (FOX 9) - The family of Justine Ruszczyk Damond says they are "satisfied" with the verdict in the trial of former Minneapolis Police Officer Mohamed Noor.
John Ruszczyk, Justine's father, and Don Damond, Justine's fiance both read statements at a press conference following the trial verdict Tuesday. The jury found Noor guilty of third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, and not guilty of second-degree murder.
"The jury’s decision reflects the community’s commitment to three important pillars of a civil society: the rule of law, the respect for the sanctity of life and the obligation of the police force to serve and protect," said Ruszczyk.
Both men were critical of the Minneapolis Police Department, calling the department's actions following the shooting into question.
"We would like to note that we believe the conviction was reached despite the active resistance of a number of Minneapolis officers, including the head of their union and either active resistance or gross incompetence of the BCA, particularly at the beginning of the investigation," said Ruszczyk.
"Ironically, the Minneapolis police department emblem on the squad door says, 'to protect with courage and to serve with compassion,'" said Don Damond. "Where were these values that night?"
On July 15, 2017, Justine Damond had called police after she heard a possible sexual assault. When she saw the police car in the alley, she went up to it. When she appeared at the driver's side window, Noor reached across his partner and shot her, killing her.
"That night there was tragic lapse of care and complete disregard for the sanctity of life," said Damond. "The evidence in this case clearly showed an egregious failure of the Minneapolis Police Department."
He called upon Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey and Police Chief Medaria Arradondo to make sure the department's motto extends beyond "just words on a car door."
Noor is scheduled to be sentenced on June 7.