Security video from the I-394 off-ramp where Jason Yang leaped to his death will show that Minneapolis police officers neither fired shots at the man nor touched him physically before he jumped.
The existence of the video was revealed today in a statement issued by Minneapolis Police Chief Tim Dolan. He said an investigation into Yang's death is about to wrap up, and accusations by "self-serving charlatans" are wrong to accuse the police of foul play.[jump]
Five officers chased Yang after breaking up a fight at the Epic nightclub in the early morning of Nov. 13. The 28-year-old man ran into a nearby parking ramp and out onto off-ramp, climbed over the hurricane fencing and jumped to a parking field below. He was dead by the time paramedics arrived on the scene.
The Hennepin County Medical Examiner called Yang's death an accident, and listed his cause of death as coming from multiple blunt force injuries.
Members of Yang's family viewed his body last week, accompanied by Communities United President Michelle Gross, and they've filed affidavits stating their belief that Yang was shot.
Watchdog group Citizens United and Dolan have been at loggerheads before. Along with the Civilian Review Authority, it has accused Dolan of regularly neglecting to honor the CRA's recommendations for discipline against police officers.
It would seem that Gross is the "self-serving charlatan" referenced by Dolan.
Here's his complete statement:
The Minneapolis Police recognize that Jason Yang's family is grieving their loss, and I would like to extend our sympathies to his family.
The Minneapolis Police Homicide Unit has substantially concluded its investigation into the falling death of Mr. Yang. The video evidence from the ramp supports officers' statements and radio transmissions. The reality is that there were no shots fired by officers and there was absolutely no physical contact by officers with Mr. Yang between the time that Mr. Yang participated in an assault on officers until officers gave first aid after Mr. Yang's fatal fall.
We recognize the family is dealing with the loss of their loved one; it is irresponsible for some individuals to lead a grieving family into believing these false accusations. These individuals have long been self-serving charlatans who have little regard for the truth or the harm they can do to a community. The officers involved in this incident deserve the full support of the people of Minneapolis.
Police spokesman Sgt. Jesse Garcia said today that the video and other evidence will be made public when the police conclude their investigation.