Abdikadir Hassan gasped when he found out his potential mentor was the officer who shot and killed a woman in south Minneapolis over the weekend.
“I was told he was a good guy to get to know,” Hassan said. “He is inspiring to young people in the community.”
Details continue to emerge about the police officer who shot Justine Damond.
The BCA has not officially named 31-year-old Mohamed Noor, but a source confirmed that he was the shooter. Attorney Tom Plunkett is representing the officer, but declined to identify him.
Noor, joined the department in March 2015 as the first Somali police officer to patrol the 5th Precinct in southwest Minneapolis, according to a city newsletter. He holds a degree in Business Adminstration, Management and Economics from Augsburg College.
Before joining the department, he worked in property management in commercial and residential properties in Minneapolis and St. Louis, Mo. According to the Office of Police Conduct Review, Noor has had three complaints filed against him—two of which remain open. Another was closed without discipline.
Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said that he would decide himself whether Noor is charged in the shooting rather than use a grand jury. He said he believes Noor’s body camera should have been running at the time of the shooting.
“I do understand this, they were driving down an alley, the victim approached the car. That’s not necessarily a time you must, but frankly I think it’s a time you should.”
Noor has been sued once in his short career with the police department, stemming from a May 25, 2017 incident, in which he and two other officers came to a woman’s home and took her to the hospital, which the woman alleges constituted false imprisonment, assault and battery. According to the recently filed and ongoing lawsuit, the officers claimed they had reason to believe the woman was suffering a mental health crisis — which she denied — and Noor “grabbed her right wrist and upper arm,” exacerbating a previous shoulder injury in the process.
Last year, Mayor Betsy Hodges posted a note about Noor. It read:
“I want to take a moment to recognize Officer Mohamed Noor, the newest Somali officer in the Minneapolis Police Department. Officer Noor has been assigned to the 5th Precinct, where his arrival has been highly celebrated, particularly by the Somali community in and around Karmel Mall. The community even hosted a meet and greet event (see pics) to welcome him. A wonderful sign of building trust and community policing at work.”
The Somali American Police Association, which Noor is a member declined to comment. A spokesperson for the group said they are waiting for the BCA to complete investigation.
Meanwhile, some members of the Somali community who knew the officer are scrambling to understand what went down that weekend. Others remain silent wary that this incident could shed a negative light on Minnesota’s Somali community.
Suud Olat said he did not know Noor personally, but saw him at community events. The first time he met Noor, he said, was six months back at a soccer tournament in Cedar Riverside where Noor and other officers were patrolling the area. Olat described Noor as kind, fair and someone who cares about protecting the community.
“I feel sad,” Olat said. “As a community, we love members of our community who serve in the police.”
Mohamud Noor, unrelated to officer Noor said the community is “double” shocked. Because there is another officer involved shooting and on top of that, the officer who has been called into question is a member of the Somali community.
“People are shocked because of the tragedy of the killing that took place,” Noor said. “This should be treated as a police-civilian issue. There is a loss of life and we’re always concerned. We believe the police should be held accountable as any other police shooting.”