Officials announced on Wednesday afternoon that there would be no federal civil rights charges in the Jamar Clark shooting that ended in tragedy after Clark died due to fatal wounds sustained after two police officers shot him during a confrontation. Protests over his death erupted, with many demonstrators claiming that Clark was handcuffed when he was shot, an allegation the county attorney refuted.
Local Minneapolis officials declined to prosecute the two officers in March, stating that evidence corroborated the officers' claim that Clark had allegedly interfered with emergency workers attempting to provide care for an alleged domestic assault victim by grabbing for an officer's gun. During the incident, Clark, who is black, was shot in the head by the officers, who are white. Although the Hennepin County attorney claimed that evidence proved the officers' lives were endangered and therefore they were justified in use of deadly force, the Department of Justice still reviewed the case after Mayor Betsy Hodges asked it to investigate whether Clark's civil rights were violated.
Clark's death and the subsequent non-indictment fueled several protests, including a total shutdown of a Minneapolis interstate and an 18-day encampment outside a police precinct to demand "Justice for Jamar." Many protesters felt that his death and the lack of charges were yet another representation of what Black Lives Matter has been claiming all along — that there's injustice in the way our justice system works.
Clark, 24, was on life support after the shooting before the decision was made to take him off it. Nicknamed "Dizzy," he was the youngest of 10 children.