Why Cop Who Shot Bride-to-Be Doesn't Have to Talk

Any lawyer who tells Mohamed Noor to should be disbarred, says one attorney
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 20, 2017 9:15 AM CDT
Why Cop Who Shot Bride-to-Be Doesn't Have to Talk
In this May 2016 photo provided by the City of Minneapolis, police officer Mohamed Noor, right, is greeted by a well-wisher at a community event welcoming him to the Minneapolis police force.   (Uncredited)

The Minneapolis police officer who fatally shot a woman who had called 911 to report a possible rape still hasn't spoken with investigators and doesn't have to, but he will be compelled to give a statement to his department as part of an internal investigation. Officer Mohamed Noor hasn't provided his explanation for what happened Saturday when he fired a shot from the passenger seat of a squad car, past his partner in the driver's seat, and killed Justine Damond, 40, who was standing outside the vehicle. When it comes to talking to authorities, defense attorneys and legal experts say police officers have the same Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination as everyone else.

"Any lawyer [who] would recommend to him that he should give a statement to the [Bureau of Criminal Apprehension] should be disbarred," Minneapolis defense attorney Joe Friedberg, who's not involved in the case, tells the AP. "Nobody should ever speak to law enforcement when they're the subject of a criminal investigation." The police department's internal affairs unit can compel Noor to give a statement as part of its own investigation, and fire him if he refuses, but that statement can't be used against him in any criminal investigation, Friedberg says. An internal use-of-force investigation has been opened, which is standard any time an officer discharges a weapon. (Damond called 911 once, then again 8 minutes later.)

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