Minnesota Attorney Said that the Racists That Shot 5 Black Lives Matters Demonstrators “sick people”

Update Jan. 17, 2017. Trial Begins for Shooter of Black Lives Matter Activists in Minnesota

Remember those racists who shot those five Black Lives Matters demonstrators in Minneapolis? Hennepin County Attorney Michael Freeman said in a statement that the attack was racially motived and increased the severity of the charges.

“There is no doubt that the attack by the four was racially motivated,” Freeman said. “The defendants’ own statements, their videos, show that these are sick people. Maybe I shouldn’t say that, but the language they use, and what they say about fellow Americans, citizens, are just not acceptable.”

Police have arrested four men for the November 23 violent crime that took place during a ##Justice4Jamar peaceful demonstration. Those arrested are Lawrence Scarsella, 23, of Lakeville, Joseph Martin Backman, 27, of Eagan, Nathan Wayne Gustavsson, 22, of Hermantown and Daniel Thomas Macey, 26, of Pine City. Besides Scarsella, at this point they have each been charged with one count of second-degree riot-armed with a dangerous weapon.

At a bail hearing for Scarsella, Assistant Hennepin County Attorney Judith Hawley was seeking $500,000 bail and she told Hennepin County District Court Judge Hilary Caligiuri that one of the bullets fired that night is so close to 19-year-old shooting victim Tevin King’s arteries that it can’t be removed from his abdomen. Hawley told the court that because of that, she will be filing a new charge of first-degree assault to replace the original second-degree assault.

It wasn’t clear from the statement whether the change to first-degree assault would apply to all four defendants or just Scarsella.

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Here’s the complete statement released by Freeman.

Additional charges to be filed in shooting of protesters at MPD 4th precinct
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Mike Freeman has indicated that the County Attorney’s Office intends to file additional charges against Allen Lawrence Scarsella, 23, of Lakeville, one of the men accused in the shooting of five peaceful protesters outside the fourth precinct on November 23.

During a hearing to keep Scarsella’s bail at $500,000, Assistant Hennepin County Attorney Judith Hawley told Hennepin County District Court Judge Hilary Caligiuri that the bullet is lodged so close to 19-year-old shooting victim Tevin King’s arteries that it can’t be removed from his abdomen. As a result, Hawley said she will be filing a new charge of first-degree assault to replace the original second-degree assault.

In addition to the charges brought against Scarsella, Joseph Martin Backman, 27, of Eagan, Nathan Wayne Gustavsson, 22, of Hermantown and Daniel Thomas Macey, 26, of Pine City have each been charged with one count of second-degree riot-armed with a dangerous weapon.

“There is no doubt that the attack by the four was racially motivated,” Freeman said. “The defendants’ own statements, their videos, show that these are sick people. Maybe I shouldn’t say that, but the language they use, and what they say about fellow Americans, citizens, are just not acceptable.”

Freeman said the Minnesota hate crime law only moves a misdemeanor crime to a gross misdemeanor and a gross misdemeanor to a felony. The four men were not charged with that because the sentences for them, especially the suspected shooter, Scarsella, would be significantly longer for the riot and assault charges.

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