Former Minneapolis police officer Mohamed Noor who killed an unarmed Australian woman named Justine Damond in July of 2017, was found guilty of third degree murder and second degree manslaughter. Now there are more details coming out about that tragic night, including video footage.
Body cam footage that was just released yesterday shows Noor in a panic after shooting Damond. An officer, identified as Officer Jesse Lopez says to Noor, “You alright? Yeah. Just keep to yourself, keep your mouth shut.” Lopez is also being heard telling another officer to turn off the camera inside the cop car.
One officer, identified as Robert Lewis, is heard telling another officer, “At first I thought maybe he shot somebody.”
“He did,” says the unidentified officer.
“Oh, he did? So he hit the person?” Lewis asks.
“In the stomach.”
“Shut up,” Lewis says. “Shut up,” he adds again. Watch the disturbing video below:
MPR News reports, “Prosecutors at Noor’s trial argued that police on the scene didn’t cooperate with the investigation of Ruszczyk’s death. And some of the most critical conversations from the night weren’t captured by bodycams.”
The 33-year-old Somali-American spoke out for the first and only time during the trial, using the same defense many cops who shot and killed unarmed people have used — he was in fear for him and his partner, Matthew Harrity.
Noor said he saw a woman in a pink shirt with blond hair outside of his partner’s window, prompting him to yell, “Oh Jesus!” Noor claimed the woman raised her right arm. “I fired one shot,” he said before adding, “My intent was to stop the threat and save my partner’s life.”
He said he immediately realized he had shot an innocent woman.
“I felt like my whole world came crashing down. I couldn’t breathe,” explained Noor who cried on the stand.
The Associated Press reported that the prosecution “pounced on that during her cross-examination, asking Noor if he believed ‘concern’ was enough to fire his weapon. Noor said it was when looking at all the circumstances and to protect himself and Harrity from death or great bodily harm. [Prosecutor Amy] Sweasy also attacked Noor for making a quick decision without being able to see Damond’s hands, or whether she was carrying a weapon or a cellphone.”
Noor became a police officer in 2016.
On the evening of July 15, 2017, around 11:30 p.m., Damond, 40, called 911 to report a possible assault near her house. Harrity and Noor were the officers who arrived on the scene.
The officer’s body cameras weren’t on and there isn’t a video of the shooting.
Noor will be sentenced June 7 and is facing over 30 years in prison. He is the first police officer in Minnesota to be convicted of an on-duty shooting.