Armed Man Shot, Killed by Minneapolis Police

June 27, 2018 05:44 AM

According to Minneapolis Police Spokesperson John Elder, one man was shot and killed by police after the man began to fire a gun in the air Saturday evening.

There were two calls made around 5:30 p.m. to 911. Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo said the first call detailed a man in the 4800 block of Bryant Avenue North with a gun. The second call reported shots fired in the same area.

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Elder said police responded to the area of 47th Avenue North and Bryant Avenue North and started chasing the man on foot. 

Shots were fired and the suspect was pronounced dead at the scene. Police say the suspect was armed at the time of the shooting.

The NAACP of Minneapolis has identified the man to be 30-year-old Thurman Blevins on their Facebook page. Authorities still have yet to confirm.

Witnesses at the scene described hearing close to a dozen gunshots.

Arradondo said officers had body cameras on them at the time of the shooting. 

"In this incident, the officers involved did have or were wearing body-worn cameras," Arradondo said.

Elder added those cameras were fully operational at the time of the shooting and that police believe that video of the shooting was captured on at least two officer body cameras.

Residents and community activists gathered at the scene shortly after the shooting. Arradondo said he met with those people and tried to answer as many questions as he could about the incident.

"These obviously are very dynamic situations that can cause folks in the community to feel trauma," Arradondo told reporters during a press conference update at the scene. "We are trying to provide as much info to the community as we receive it. Transparency is going to be very important."

Police officials would not go into detail about what the man was doing at the time of the shooting. Arradondo said any updates on the investigation would come from the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

"We are basically at a point of securing the scene for them while they conduct their investigation and certainly are making sure that our personnel are available to them as they will need to get information and gather more facts from them," Arradondo said.

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey issued the following statement on the matter: 

I want to offer words that can help ease the pain that people in every neighborhood of our city feel tonight. But at the same time, I must recognize that whatever words I come up with will fall short of that goal. 

Regardless of what happened tonight – too many times, people from across Minneapolis and the Twin Cities have been stung by the pain of a life lost in the course of an encounter with law enforcement. Regardless of what happened tonight – the historical trauma inflicted on communities of color is never far from nearly every facet of our lives. 

Tonight we grieve as our memories are stirred by a now too familiar feeling – by the loss of someone's son, brother, friend, and neighbor.

Events of the past several years, and now tonight, have tested our city in ways that are new to some neighborhoods but are all familiar for others. Strained relations between law enforcement officials and the communities they serve – especially communities of color – have exacted a toll on the very soul of our city, our region, and this nation.   

My heart is heavy knowing that tonight in Minneapolis, we mark the beginning of another chapter in a painful history. In the days ahead I will continue working with Chief Arradondo to gather all the facts and take action as necessary. 

The facts that we currently have are limited. But here is what we know now: This afternoon there was an officer-involved shooting, during which a man was killed. The officers arrived on the scene in response to two 9-1-1 calls indicating that a man was firing a silver 9mm handgun. The victim was armed, and the case has been referred to the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) for investigation.  

At the end of the day, we know that no matter what transpired in the moments leading up to the shooting, we know with certainty that the outcome is a tragedy. To everyone hurting tonight:  I'm sorry.

The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is currently investigating the incident.

This is a breaking news story. KSTP is working to get more details on this story and will post updates as more information becomes available.

Stay with 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS and KSTP.com as we follow this story. Refresh your page to make sure you are seeing the most current information.

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Tommy Wiita and Kirsten Swanson

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