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'What happened to you?': Gun owners' group leader criticized over Amir Locke support

The Minnesota Gun Owners Caucus released a statement criticizing MPD over the killing.

A Minnesota-based 2nd Amendment activist is facing backlash from fellow gun owners over his group's stance on the Amir Locke killing

On Friday, the Minnesota Gun Owners Caucus, a nonprofit lobbying organization, released the following statement, criticizing the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) for Locke's death:

"While many facts remain unknown at this time, information indicates that Amir Locke was a law-abiding citizen who was lawfully in possession of a firearm when he was shot and killed by Minneapolis Police on the morning of February 2nd," the statement says.

“The tragic circumstances of Mr. Locke’s death were completely avoidable, “ said Rob Doar, the group's senior vice president for government affairs, in the release. “It’s yet another example where a no-knock warrant has resulted in the death of an innocent person. In this case, as in others, the public should expect and receive full transparency and accountability from law enforcement agencies that serve and protect our local communities.”

The next day, Doar took to social media to share an email he received in response to his statement. The sender accuses Doar of going "full BLM and Antifa," among other things (warning, contains strong language):

But Doar's outspoken specific criticisms of no-knock warrants as well as the MPD has earned him backlash across social media — and he's spent the last couple of days debating fellow conservatives, and in some cases responding to harassment, on his Twitter account: 

The fallout has also gotten him widespread media attention, with Doar saying that he appeared for an interview with the Huffington Post on Saturday.

However, Doar is not the only Minnesota conservative taking a critical view of MPD; Sen. Paul Gazelka (R) also issued a statement on the case, calling for an "immediate review" of no-knock warrants: 

Gazelka also pointed out that state lawmakers had "worked hard to make changes to no-knock warrants in the 2021 legislative session."

In light of the controversy, Minneapolis enacted a moratorium on no-knock warrants. Following the decision, Mayor Jacob Frey said that he will work with Eastern Kentucky University's DeRay McKesson and Dr. Pete Kraska, who helped implement reform to no-knock police entries in Louisville after police there killed Breonna Taylor in March 2020.

Locke's family has said the 22-year-old had a permit to carry and did not have a criminal record, with his father saying on Friday that his son was a DoorDash driver and got a gun to protect himself.

On Saturday, a "car caravan" converged on downtown Minneapolis in a protest over the killing; demonstrators called for criminal charges as well as the firing of the police officer who shot Locke. 

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