Minneapolis Police Department has released the body camera video from the police shooting that killed 22-year-old Amir Locke at a downtown apartment building Wednesday morning.
The video, released at 7 p.m. Thursday, shows the moment that a SWAT team burst into an apartment and one of the officers – Mark Hanneman – firing the shots that killed Locke.
It shows officers used a key to enter the apartment just before 6:50 a.m. Wednesday. It does not show that officers announce their presence before entering, but shows several officers shouted "Police search warrant" several times upon entering.
Locke was under a blanket, seemingly sleeping on a couch when officers entered with guns drawn and flashlights on. Part of his head emerges from the blanket, and seconds later the shots were fired that killed him.
The entry to the apartment and the shooting of Locke spanned a period of mere seconds. You can see the video below in slo-motion, before it appears in real-time at the end. (Warning: upsetting scenes).
The video does show that Locke had a gun in his hand when he was shot, but his finger does not appear to be on the trigger and it doesn't appear to be pointed directly at any of the officers. A still image released by City of Minneapolis (below) along with the video shows the gun pointed towards the floor.
In the wake of Locke's death, Minneapolis Police Department issued a news release stating he was "armed with a handgun pointed in the direction of officers." Locke's family says he had a permit to carry a gun.
There is no indication that officers said he had a gun prior to shots being fired by Hanneman, and there was no order from an officer for him to put it down.
Hanneman has been with the Minneapolis Police Department since 2015, and had temporarily been assigned to the SWAT team on Sunday, just three days before Locke was shot. He had been subject of three disciplinary complaints since he started, all of which were closed with no further action taken.
Police had been serving the warrant in relation to a homicide investigation in St. Paul. The Star Tribune reported Thursday, citing law enforcement sources, that Locke was not the target of the warrant, though may be related to the person who was.
The Locke family is now being represented by civil rights attorneys Jeff Storm and Benjamin Crump, the latter of whom represented the family of George Floyd following his murder by then-MPD officer Derek Chauvin in May 2020.
Crump said that Locke "has several family members in law enforcement and no past criminal history," and said he "legally possessed a firearm at the time of his death."
One of the major questions regarding the raid was whether it was a "no-knock warrant," the use of which came into particular focus nationwide following the fatal police shooting of Breonna Taylor in Kentucky during a no-knock warrant.
A transcript of Minneapolis police dispatch at 6:19 a.m. on the day of Locke's shooting reads: "THEY WILL AIR WHEN ABOUT TO EXECUTE THIS RISK - NO NOISE EXPECTED."
At 6:48 a.m., police tell dispatch that one person had been shot on the 7th floor, and reported 3 minutes and 44 seconds later that CPR had been started.
Less than 90 seconds later, officers began carrying Locke to the main floor.
A policy restricting no-knock warrants in Minneapolis was introduced in November 2020 by Mayor Jacob Frey and then MPD Chief Medaria Arradondo, stating that officers must announce their presence as they enter and "periodically announce themselves" to give those inside time to respond.
However, there are exceptions for "unannounced entry" warrants in high-risk situations where there is a risk of imminent danger to officers or the public, with the Pioneer Press noting that this has to be signed off by a judge.
MPD continued to make dozens of requests for the use of no-knock warrants after November 2020, as reported by MinnPost in September.