On Saturday, June 23, Minneapolis police officers were responding to a 911 call that a man was shooting off a silver handgun, according to CBS Minnesota. The details are still unclear, but officers reportedly approached 31-year-old Thurman Blevins who was sitting on a curb with a woman, who is believed to be the mother of his child, and a baby. For reasons that have not been revealed, Blevins ran and both officers fired their guns, fatally shooting him.
The cops now claim a gun was found on the scene, but witnesses are saying that is not true.
James Lark, who allegedly saw the incident, told CBS Minnesota, “On my mama … I didn’t see no gun. I didn’t see no gun. I didn’t see no gun. I didn’t see no gun.” Another eyewitness, Eva Watson, told The Star-Tribune, “He didn’t have a gun or anything. He was just sitting there. He got killed for nothing!”
Countless other witnesses say they saw the cops aggressively approach Blevins, screaming at him, tasing him, he ran and the cops shot him within minutes.
An unidentified person in the video below said, “But what I know is that he didn’t have no gun on him and we know him. I know him around here, he don’t do nothing but ride scooters and mopeds and stuff like that. He ain’t a violent type dude. … They hopped out with their guns drawn anyway. That’s what made me get the phone out.” Watch below:
Lt. Bob Kroll, Minneapolis Police union president, is already defending the officers, saying, “When the evidence is in, it will show these officers do exactly what they are hired to do. They run to gunfire, not from it, place themselves in harm’s way and stop a threat. This is nothing short of heroic activity. It is our belief that body cameras will reveal what happened, that the officers were subjected to a threat. There were numerous commands to drop the firearm, the suspect did not comply with these commands.”
Police were reportedly wearing body cams, but the footage has not been released.
The killing of Thurman Blevins comes just five days after 17-year-old Antwon Rose was shot and killed by police on June 19 in Pittsburgh.
See a video at the vigil for Thurman Blevins below: