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NAACP: Police should be accountable

When Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman declined to file charges against two Minneapolis police officers for the November shooting death of Jamar Clark, the decision didn't shock officials from the NAACP's chapter in Rochester.

"I'm not surprised," said W.C. Jordan, president of the NAACP chapter in Rochester. "Just the way they were doing their investigation and their action...a federal investigation will follow."

Jordan believed that the video used during the case was "sketchy", and that many of the witness statements were only referenced and not explored in-depth.

"When you don't have a clear video, witness statements become important. We've seen that in other investigations as well," Jordan said. "This is just a starting point. I hope the additional investigation will take more into account of what people saw. I don't think this is the final decision it...we just want to stay calm and see what the federal investigation will show."

Others disagreed. Olmsted County Attorney Mark Ostrem watched the press conference Wednesday, he said, and watched all the videos.


"It was a tough decision because of what's going on in the (Minneapolis) community," he said this morning, "but (Hennepin County Attorney) Mike Freeman put more time into that investigation than most of us do on any case.

"I thought it was a very, very thoughtful decision, and it was the right one."

However, Jordan continues to hope for additional information that will provide more context to the shooting.

"We want to be able to get a fair decision," he said, "and the only way that's going to happen if all the evidence is looked at and come to a conclusion based on the facts that are available."

Do you agree with the decision not to prosecute Minneapolis police officers in the Jamar Clark case? Go to Postbulletin.com and click on the survey.

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