BCA releases investigative files in Winston Smith death
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The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension Wednesday released the bulk of its investigative files relating to the death of Winston Smith, the 32-year-old who was killed by members of a U.S. Marshals Service task force in June.
The files include audio-recorded interviews with paramedics, witnesses and police officers, along with police reports and photos. The BCA says there is no video of the incident itself, only body and dash camera video by responding law enforcement afterwards.
Earlier this month, Crow Wing County Attorney Donald F. Ryan announced no criminal charges will be filed, saying the actions of the U.S. Marshal Task Force were exercised lawfully, further stating that Smith had pointed his weapon at a responding deputy during the incident this past summer.
The review was done by the Crow Wing attorney due to a conflict of interest, at Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman’s discretion.
"It is in my opinion that the use of deadly force by the US Marshals Task Force on June 3, 2021, was authorized under Minnesota Law… Therefore, no criminal prosecution should be sought in this matter," Ryan wrote in his decision.
The BCA plans to release the video of the responding law enforcement officers once redactions are made to protect the identities of undercover officers, per Minnesota statutes.
This is a developing story. KSTP is working on learning more information and will update this story.