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Australian woman fatally shot by Minneapolis police officer
17 July 2017, 04:25 | Erica Roy
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Officials confirmed in a release Sunday-and later at a press conference-that a woman died as the result of an officer-involved shooting and that the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is investigating the incident. Some officers are known to deliberatly turn their cameras off so that they can protect themselves in the event of a shooting.It's also now known why the police officers did not use Taser guns instead of guns with bullets.
Police arrived in a squad auto and the officer seated in the passenger seat shot Damond through the driver's side window, sources familiar with the incident said, the media outlet reported.
Ms Damond trained as a veterinarian in Sydney, and went on to study and practice yoga and meditation.
Investigators said the squad vehicle video was on but didn't capture what happened at the scene.
According to the Star Tribune, her family said she had called emergency services after hearing "a sound" in the alley near her home late on Saturday night. "I call on the BCA to share as much information with all of us as quickly as they can".
Nancy Coune and Cindi Claypatch said they knew her well from their involvement at the Lake Harriet Spiritual Community Center in South Minneapolis. The woman's family now demands answers for what they say was unprovoked violence.
"My mom is dead because the police officer shot her for reasons I don't know and I demand answers", he said.
In a video shared online, Ms Damond's stepson Zach Damond, 22, recounted what had happened on Saturday night before his stepmother called the police.
"I've been heartsick every time there's been an officer-involved shooting", she said.
Damond was originally from Sydney, Australia, but lived with her fiancé in Minneapolis, according to the Star Tribune. "Her loss, for me, is just a personal reminder that we shouldn't waste time on petty gripes or complaints, we should just find a way to love, bigger and better, because we don't know when the people we care about may not be there anymore".
Community anger over the shooting is growing, as family, friends and local activists accuse police of a lack of transparency over what happened.
An investigation into the incident is underway, but could be hard as the officers' body cameras were reportedly not switched on, and a camera in a squad vehicle did not capture it.
"I think it's a systemic thing", she said.
"The BCA's investigation is in its very early stages", the agency said in a statement Sunday.
She has been described as an "incredible woman" and a "brilliant, well-known, local healer".
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