Last Saturday, Justine Damond (née Ruszczyk) was shot and killed by Minneapolis police after making two 911 calls to report a possible sexual assault happening in her neighborhood. When officers arrived on the scene, Damond approached the police vehicle on the driver’s side and was shot by the officer in the passenger seat. Due to another police shooting in Minneapolis, hundreds rallied Thursday, including Valerie Castile, the mother of fellow police shooting victim Philando Castile, to honor Damond and protest police violence. Now police chief Janeé Harteau has resigned in the wake of the ongoing scandal.
According to Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hedges, Harteau resigned after a short discussion. In a statement, Hedges did not mention Damond’s shooting specifically but said:
“I’ve lost confidence in the chief’s ability to lead us further — and from the many conversations I’ve had with people around our city, especially this week, it is clear that she has lost the confidence of the people of Minneapolis as well.”
Harteau spoke publicly about the incident Thursday and said the shooting “should not have happened.”
“On our squad cars, you will find the words: ‘To protect with courage and serve with compassion,’” she said. “This did not happen.”
Damond’s shooting was declared a homicide, and the officers involved have been placed on administrative leave, but no charges have been filed yet. Damond’s family has hired attorney Bob Bennett who represented Philando Castile’s family and secured a $3 million settlement for the family in June.