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Crime blotter: white riot

On December 8, at roughly 11:30 p.m., Minneapolis police officers were dispatched to a residence on the 3700 block of Bryant Avenue N. to investigate a disturbance. Upon arrival the officers attempted to disperse a large group of African American males gathered outside the home. According to a pair of criminal complaints filed this month in Hennepin County District Court, two white males, brothers William Kenneth Saarela and Daniel Jay Saarela, then emerged from the residence and began yelling racial profanities at the group. Officers ordered the pair to go back inside the house, but they initially refused. The police then radioed for additional squad cars. At some point during this confrontation William Saarela stated that he was going inside to get a handgun.

The group of black males was eventually persuaded to disperse. Shortly afterwards, according to the criminal complaints, multiple shots were fired from the rear of the residence. Officers then heard a male voice inside the house hollering threats. "I'm going to fucking kill you," he allegedly screamed. "You're fucking dead." Officers then ordered all occupants of the house to come outside. The Saarela brothers were both arrested after being tased. William has been charged with making terroristic threats, obstructing the legal process, and intentional discharge of a firearm. Daniel faces counts of making terroristic threats and obstructing the legal process.