A St. Paul man is facing assault charges after shooting an innocent bystander in downtown Minneapolis last week.
The shooting happened last Tuesday night near a bus stop at 6th Street and Hennepin Avenue South – one of the busier intersections in downtown Minneapolis.
As the Minneapolis police chief put it in a statement, "a fight between two men ended when one pulled out a handgun and fired it. Tragically that round struck a bystander."
In a news release on Monday, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said 28-year-old Delorien Chatman was charged with two counts of assault and one count of illegally possessing a firearm.
Chatman was arrested wearing the same clothing as witnesses described, but denied being in Minneapolis even when police confronted him with clear surveillance images, Freeman's office said.
According to the criminal complaint, Chatman and another individual were in an altercation. Chatman got pushed to the ground, got back up and pulled out a gun. He fired, striking the bystander, the charges say.
Chatman was convicted of aggravated robbery in 2007, and is currently on parole after being caught with a firearm as a felon in 2012, according to the complaint.
His bail has been set at $500,000 "due to the serious nature of endangering the safety of other," the county attorney said in the release.
The victim was seriously injured
The man who was shot had just finished his shift at work and was waiting for the bus, the criminal complaint says.
After he was hit in the stomach, he was rushed to HCMC and had emergency surgery. He survived but has a hole in his colon and lost some of his small intestine, according to the charges. Authorities say the bullet landed just an inch away from his spine.
The incident, combined with other recent gunfire, has prompted chief Medaria Arradondo to promise an increased police presence downtown.