MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is considering opening an investigation into a fatal 2013 Minneapolis police shooting.
The Hennepin County Attorney’s Office says the office has reviewed new evidence in the death of Terrance Franklin since taking the case to a grand jury.
“We sent a letter in early May to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension suggesting they should consider doing a new investigation. The BCA was not the original investigating agency so they would be taking an outside, independent look,” HCAO officials said in a statement Saturday.
Franklin, 22, was shot and killed during a confrontation with police inside a home in Uptown. At the time, Minneapolis police said he fled, broke into a home, hid in a basement during an altercation and grabbed an officer’s weapon, striking two.
Walt Franklin welcomes a new investigation into his son’s death, saying he didn’t deserve to die for his actions.
“It will be a blessing if we can reopen this thing,” Walt said. “I’ve been praying and banking on this to happen. I’ve been asking for something to come up like this to bring it out.”
Walt believes the increased scrutiny on the Minneapolis Police Department following the murder of George Floyd, and those that investigate the MPD, helped lead to this moment.
“I thank God that it took George Floyd to bring this to an opening for everyone to see, open our eyes to see that we have to reinvestigate all these cases that the Minneapolis police have brought upon themselves,” Walt said.
MPD originally investigated its own officer-involved shooting and found no wrongdoing. The then-police chief pushed to have the BCA investigate future cases where officers use force. That happened in 2014.
Franklin’s family attorney Mike Padden said during a 2020 interview with WCCO that the story was “something that I did not find credible.” He went on to say that “police allege that this young man had grabbed the gun of the SWAT officer and shot two officers. We didn’t believe it.”
“Breaking into a home to evade arrest is a crime, but it doesn’t merit a death sentence. We engaged in years of a process of discovery that we feel resulted in the truth coming out, not the official version police generated,” Padden said.
After a grand jury cleared the police of wrongdoing, Padden filed a wrongful death lawsuit. In February of 2020, the family settled for $795,000 with the city of Minneapolis.
Padden says that video evidence captured by a man on his iPod touch was central to the case. He says when the audio is enhanced you can hear MPD officers use a racial slur. Seconds later, he says Franklin’s voice can be heard in the video.
“Often what happens is you see in video, you see a different story in reports than what the video shows,” he said. “He didn’t deserve to die, that’s the whole thing. I think it’s clear from the evidence in this case this was a straight-up execution, and therefore a murder.”
Padden analyzed Franklin’s case for years, eventually publishing a book last October. His investigation is also part of a TIME article published last week.
“I hope for my client is that there’s a criminal prosecution,” he said. “Now what happens after that remains to be seen.”
Minneapolis police told WCCO in October that the case “was investigated thoroughly and reviewed in great depth by legal experts. The outcome of those two investigations yielded that there was no wrong doing by the Minneapolis Police Department.”
The BCA told WCCO the agency is currently evaluating what its involvement in the case would be, if any.
Source: CBS Minnesota