On Wednesday, February 2nd, Minneapolis police murdered Amir Locke, a 22 year old Black man. Minneapolis PD acquired a no knock warrant for the address, even though the original warrant filed by St Paul PD was just a search warrant. However, Locke was not named in the warrant, nor was he even a suspect in the case they were investigating. Minneapolis PD shot him because he is a Black man and he was holding a licensed gun when they startled him awake.

Locke’s family is calling for accountability of the police. Twin Cities Coalition for Justice for Jamar (TCC4J) put out the following demands: arrest and jail the killer cops; release the body camera footage; file murder charges against the shooter; ban all no-knock warrants; and the resignation of interim Police Chief Amelia Huffman and Mayor Jacob Frey. As of February 7, the body camera footage was released, which revealed some inconsistencies with the initial MPD report. Mayor Frey has also “paused” no-knock warrants to review the MPD practice.

Community members have demanded accountability of the Minneapolis police department for the murder of Amir Locke. Multiple car caravans have been held in downtown Minneapolis in response. On Saturday, February 5th, thousands of community members rallied and marched in downtown Minneapolis demanding justice for Amir Locke, police accountability, and community control of the Minneapolis Police Department. More protests for Amir Locke have been called for this week.

MPD and Minnesota police have a history of not facing accountability for police crimes and murders. Amir Locke’s murder came in the wake of the murder of George Floyd, Dante Wright, Winston Smith, and others. Amir Locke was the third Black man killed by police in Minnesota in 66 days. It has also been reported that judge Peter Cahill, who was the judge in the Derek Chauvin trial, signed the no knock warrant that led to Amir Locke's death.

As with every police crime, the murder of Locke highlights the need for community control over police. TCC4J along with Mpls for Community Control of Police (M4CCP) call for a Civilian Police Accountability Council (CPAC). CPAC is an elected group of citizens with no connection to the police who would have the authority to discipline, hire, and fire police, and make budget and policy decisions. CPAC gives us real, substantial power over the police, not meaningless and insufficient reforms, or temporary pauses on unethical policies such as the no knock warrant.

Students for a Democratic Society stands in solidarity with the family of Amir Locke and Twin Cities Coalition for Justice for Jamar! All demands must be met! Justice for all victims of police crimes! CPAC now!