Two National Guard members suffered minor injuries after someone fired shots at them early Sunday morning.
The incident happened around 4:20 a.m. near West Broadway Avenue and Penn Avenue North in Minneapolis. National Guard members along with police officers were stationed at the location for a neighborhood security detail, according to a press release from Operation Safety Net.
The occupant of a light-colored SUV fired at least 10 shots at the law enforcement team, and a squad took off after the vehicle, according to police dispatch audio from the time of the incident. The suspect vehicle fled westbound on West Broadway Avenue, but squads lost sight of the vehicle after it entered Robbinsdale. Dispatch audio later indicated that there were two related Shotspotter activations in the area detecting five and 11 rounds fired.
The shots-fired incident came just hours after California Rep. Maxine Waters made a visit to Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, at the site of the city’s ongoing protests following the officer involved fatal shooting of Daunte Wright over a week ago. During her stop in Minnesota, Waters made what many on social media claimed were irresponsible remarks that bordered on inciting violence in the Twin Cities.
Hours after @RepMaxineWaters came to the #TwinCities and incited violence from #BrooklynCenter, shots were fired at police & National Guard in #NorthMpls around 4 a.m. The suspect got away.
White or gold Tahoe/SUV with BM driver. Fled toward Robbinsdale.https://t.co/4DSqQz51Rr pic.twitter.com/GmnX0RGUIj
— CrimeWatchMpls (@CrimeWatchMpls) April 18, 2021
Waters showed up at the protest site just before 11 p.m. on Saturday. When she was asked about the upcoming Derek Chauvin verdict and what people should do if he’s acquitted, she told the crowd, “We’ve got to get more active. We’ve got to get more confrontational. We’ve got to make sure that they know that we mean business.”
Rep. Maxine Waters showed up at the protest tonight in Brooklyn Center, telling people "we've got to get more confrontational" and suggesting they should ignore the curfew. pic.twitter.com/4FcfhIoaJf
— Alpha News (@AlphaNewsMN) April 18, 2021
Waters also drew ire on social media over her remarks about Brooklyn Center’s use of curfews for several nights this past week after businesses were looted and burglarized earlier in the week. “I don’t know what curfew means. Curfew means that I want y’all to stop talking. I want y’all to stop leading. I want y’all to stop gathering. I don’t agree with that,” she said.
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz even weighed in, suggesting Waters was “actively encouraging riots [and] violence.”
Democrats actively encouraging riots & violence.
They want to tear us apart.
“'We gotta stay on the street,' Waters was recorded saying, adding that protesters needed 'to get more confrontational' & they should ignore the curfew in place.” https://t.co/PWW7YNDbKR
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) April 18, 2021
Both guardsmen involved in the shots-fired incident sustained minor injuries and one of them was treated at the hospital for lacerations related to glass fragments, the Operation Safety Net statement said.
“I am relieved to know none of our Guardsmen were seriously injured,” said Maj. Gen. Shawn Manke, Minnesota National Guard adjutant general. “This event highlights the volatility and tension in our communities right now. I ask for peace as we work through this difficult time.”
Authorities released a compilation of images of the suspect vehicle and are asking anyone with information to contact Minneapolis police.
The National Guard has been called up as part of Operation Safety Net’s preparations for the upcoming verdict in the Chauvin trial as well as to aid in peacekeeping in the wake of the Daunte Wright police shooting.
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Minnesota Crime Watch & Information publishes news, info and commentary about crime, public safety and livability issues in Minneapolis, the Twin Cities and Greater Minnesota.