Shortly before 4 a.m. Thursday, Minneapolis police broke up the encampment that formed at the 4th Precinct more than two weeks ago. Black Lives Matter Minneapolis announced it planned a City Hall rally protesting the eviction.
It’s been almost three weeks since demonstrators with the Black Lives Matter movement began a sit-in outside the 4th Precinct station house in Minneapolis to protest the killing of Jamar Clark, a 24-year-old black man who was shot in the head in a struggle with two police officers on Nov. 15. The protesters say they will maintain their encampment until the city meets their demands, which include releasing videotapes of the fatal encounter. (Federal, state and local investigators say it is too early in their inquiries to release the tapes.) They have also urged that the case not be heard by a grand jury, because, they say, grand juries historically decline to indict police officers in shooting cases. On Tuesday night, as temperatures dipped below freezing, dozens of people, rather than the hundreds who had gathered on other nights, warmed themselves around campfires, talking, eating food from a communal kitchen, and listening to music and speeches. In the glare of floodlights set up by the police to illuminate the street, some protesters stood for portraits. They were asked to choose a single word to describe how they felt on night 17: