Mark Dayton wants Philando Castile's death investigated by Department of Justice


Protesters waited all night outside Gov. Mark Dayton's house in St. Paul, demanding the Democratic governor reckon with the tragic shooting death of Philando Castile at the hands of a St. Anthony police officer.

The governor didn't emerge during the night, and, this morning, canceled an unrelated press conference which undoubtedly would've turned into an inquisition about Castile's death.

The haunting scene of Castile bleeding out behind the wheel of his car was captured on video, and has been seen by millions of people already. What happened during the routine traffic stop, and the shooting itself, remains a mystery. 

Dayton issued a written statement, saying he had reached the White House this morning, and was asking for federal investigation into the shooting: 

I extend my deepest condolences to the family, friends, and community of Philando Castile. Our state today grieves with them. This morning, I spoke by phone with White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough to request that the U.S. Department of Justice begin an immediate independent federal investigation into this matter. Overnight, the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension began an independent investigation at the state level. They are currently collecting all necessary evidence, and interviewing witnesses, to determine what happened, and to assure that justice in this case is served. I will do everything in my power to help protect the integrity of that investigation, to ensure a proper and just outcome for all involved.

The Department of Justice has opened investigations into numerous high-profile cases where black suspects were killed while being pursued or in the custody of police, including Freddie Gray, in Baltimore, Walter Scott, in Charleston, South Carolina, and Eric Garner, in New York City.

In Ferguson, Missouri, the DoJ investigated the shooting death of Michael Brown, and declined to file charges.

Mark Dayton says the "state today grieves" with the family and friends of Philando Castile.

Mark Dayton says the "state today grieves" with the family and friends of Philando Castile.

Locally, the shooting of Jamar Clark by Minneapolis police officers last fall led to immediate calls for a federal investigation. U.S. Attorney Andrew Luger investigated the Clark case for possible civil rights violations, and ultimately declined to file charges

The Department of Justice has not yet responded to Dayton's call for investigation.