The chief of the Minneapolis Police Department has resigned following fatal shooting of an Australian native who called 911 to report a possible sexual assault.
MSN reports that Minneapolis police Chief Janee Harteau announced her resignation at the request of Mayor Betsy Hodges.
“I’ve decided I am willing to step aside to let a fresh set of leadership eyes see what more can be done for the MPD to be the very best it can be,” Harteau said in a statement.
Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau has resigned, according to the department. Story to come. pic.twitter.com/XzSbmkisA5
— Star Tribune (@StarTribune) July 21, 2017
Mayor Hodges had asked for the police chief to resign as authorities investigate the troubling incident, during which neither responding officer had their bodycam turned on.
“I’ve lost confidence in the Chief’s ability to lead us further … it is clear that she has lost the confidence of the people of Minneapolis as well,” Hodges reportedly said. “For us to continue to transform policing — and community trust in policing — we need new leadership at MPD.”
Mayor Hodges is now facing criticism herself, as protestors outside a City Hall news conference called for her resignation.
The mayor told reporters that she appreciates the frustration, but that she has no plans to resign.
Justine Damond was shot and killed Saturday night after she called 911 to report what she said was a possible sexual assault in the alley behind her home. The 40-year-old Australian native was set to marry next month.
Minneapolis police officer Mohamed Noor was sitting in the passenger seat of the responding vehicle when Damond approached the driver’s side door. Officer Noor then pulled his weapon and shot her through the window in the abdomen. Soon after, Damond was pronounced dead at the scene.
Chief Harteau publicly spoke out against the officer before her resignation, saying “Justine didn’t have to die.”
Authorities are continuing to investigate the fatal shooting, as both of the responding officers have been placed on administrative leave.