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Minneapolis Police Officers Shoots And Kills A Man During Traffic Stop

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Today authorities in Minnesota released body camera footage of Minneapolis police officers shooting and killing a 23-year-old man. The police chief says officers returned fire after the man shot at them during a traffic stop. This is the first fatal shooting involving Minneapolis police since George Floyd was killed beneath an officer's knee last May, sparking protests, riots and calls for the police department to be abolished. Joining us now with the latest is reporter Matt Sepic of Minnesota Public Radio.

Welcome.

MATT SEPIC, BYLINE: Hi.

CHANG: So what are police saying about what led to this traffic stop in the first place?

SEPIC: At a news conference this afternoon, police chief Medaria Arradondo said it was a felony weapons investigation. But because state police have taken over the case, Arradondo said he wasn't able to provide any more details about what happened. What we know so far is that officers stopped the man's vehicle at a gas station in south Minneapolis a mile from the intersection where George Floyd was killed last spring.

In the footage just released today, officers ordered the driver of a white car to stop and put his hands up. The car keeps moving, but police SUVs box him in. The video, from an officer's point of view, then shows shards of glass from the car's driver side window shattering outward along with a puff of vapor or smoke.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

UNIDENTIFIED POLICE OFFICER: Hands up - police. Hands up.

SEPIC: You can see the officer flinch. He then utters an expletive before opening fire on the driver. More than a dozen shots ring out. It's not clear if the driver continued to shoot his gun or if other officers at the scene also fired theirs. Arradondo says officers were responding to a deadly threat, and eyewitness testimony and the footage confirmed that.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

MEDARIA ARRADONDO: When I viewed the video that everyone else is viewing and certainly the real-time - the slowed-down version, it appears that the individual inside the vehicle fires his weapon at the officers first.

SEPIC: Now, a woman riding in the car was not injured, nor were any police officers. The man was pronounced dead at the scene last night.

CHANG: And what do we know about him at this point?

SEPIC: Authorities have yet to name him publicly, but the man's father, Bayle Gelle, identified him as Dolal Idd, 23 years old. Gelle spoke with reporters earlier today. He didn't say much about the shooting itself or his son but said police came to his home in a Minneapolis suburb last night with a search warrant.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

BAYLE GELLE: Well, there was screaming. It was loud, and there was a bunch of guys. At least there were 20 or something like that. They was pushing us down and screaming.

SEPIC: And state police confirmed today that they did indeed serve a warrant at the home as part of the investigation. And I should add that last year, Idd pleaded guilty to illegally possessing and shooting a gun in his family's home. According to the complaint, he shot into a basement shower. His two young children were sleeping nearby. Idd's mother told investigators in that case that he wasn't allowed in the house because he scared the kids. Police say the gun had been reported stolen from North Dakota.

CHANG: Well, what's been the reaction so far from the community, I mean, given everything that's happened earlier this year?

SEPIC: There's a lot of mistrust and skepticism here. Late last night, around a hundred people gathered outside the gas station where police shot Idd. There was a heavy law enforcement presence on the street. And on social media, the refrain was, don't trust the official narrative. Many pointed out that early reports of Floyd's death described it merely as a medical incident. The tone last night was certainly angry, but there was no violence on the part of protesters or police.

CHANG: That is reporter Matt Sepic of Minnesota Public Radio.

Thank you, Matt.

SEPIC: You're welcome. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.