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Continued: Fatal crash came half-hour after officers' shooting

  • Article by: JOY POWELL , Star Tribune
  • Last update: May 12, 2013 - 1:16 PM

The man, identified by friends and family as Terrence Terrell Franklin, 22, was shot by police after he allegedly struggled with a police dog and then with officers in the basement of the house on Bryant Avenue.

Use of siren, signals debated

Paul Applebaum, a metro attorney who specializes in federal litigation against police agencies, said Minneapolis police could have a hard time justifying use of emergency driving well after any perceived danger at the shooting scene was contained.

“To me it’s not an emergency, even though they had their lights and sirens on,” Applebaum said Saturday.

“In my opinion, a half-hour after the situation had been brought under control, there’s no justification for driving in an emergency lights and siren fashion through a congested area like south Minneapolis,” Applebaum said.

The location of the accident, in front of Calvary Baptist Church, is a four-signal intersection area typically busy with pedestrians, bicyclists and traffic. Saturday morning, bouquets, balloons and candles marked the area where the motorcycle driver, an employee of Franklin Street Bakery, was killed.

Even in the cases of actual emergencies, Applebaum added, police are obligated to drive in a manner that does not endanger the public.

The Minneapolis police manual describes how police should respond to emergencies, saying they “shall exercise caution and due consideration for the safety of the public.”

The manual, which governs police protocol, says that while Minnesota law exempts officers from traffic statutes, “the use of the red lights and siren does not exempt officers from the need for caution nor does it exempt them from criminal or civil liability.”

 

Staff writer Matt McKinney contributed to this report. Joy Powell • 612-673-7750

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