News World Justine Damond: What we know about the US shooting
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Justine Damond: What we know about the US shooting

Justine Damond
Minnesota's Somali community is afraid after Justine Damond's shooting. Photo: Instagram
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What we know about Australian Justine Damond, the police shooting that took her life and the officer who fired the fatal shots.

The incident

Australian Justine Damond was shot dead by US police officer Mohammed Noor from the passenger seat of his patrol car.

Ms Damond heard a possible assault taking place behind her Minneapolis home, called 911 and was in the alleyway when the officers responded.

She was reportedly in her pyjamas when she approached the car and was shot multiple times in the stomach.

Officer Noor and his partner’s body cameras were not turned on and their police car dashboard camera did not capture the incident.

A mobile phone was reportedly found near Ms Damond’s body.

The police officer

Mr Noor was a junior officer with little more than two years’ experience on the force.

He was the first Somali-American to join the force in a state with a high Somali-American population.

Mohammed Noor
Officer Noor had little more than two years experience in the police force. Photo: MPD

The ABC’s Ben Knight is in Minneapolis:

“We are learning that it hasn’t been a great run for him in his short time in the force. Two complaints have been lodged against him already this year,” he said.

Mr Noor’s lawyer released a statement saying the officer took the Damonds’ loss seriously.

“Officer Noor is a caring person with a family he loves and he empathises with the loss others are experiencing,” the statement read.

“The current environment for police is difficult, but Officer Noor accepts this as part of his calling.”

The two officers involved have been placed on paid administrative leave, which is standard procedure.

The victim

Ms Damond moved to the United States in 2015 and was engaged to American Don Damond.

She took his name ahead of their wedding planned for next month.

Justine Damond
Ms Damond moved to the US in 2015 and was engaged to Don Damond. Photo: Facebook

Ms Damond graduated from Manly High School and the University of Sydney.

She was a qualified vet and yoga instructor who moved to the US to “follow her heart”, according to friends in Sydney.

Many friends took to social media to express their grief, with one describing Ms Damond as “a guiding light, a dear friend and an incredible spirit”.

Ms Damond’s father John Ruszczyk said the “ugly truth” behind his daughter’s death had deepened his family’s grief.

Don Damond spoke to US media assembled at the scene saying: “Our hearts are broken”.

A vigil for Ms Damond will be held in Sydney on Wednesday morning.

The scene

Knight describes the alley: “You can see there are street lights in there.”

“There are lights in the garages that come on automatically whenever there is motion.

“This is a very well-lit area, this is a very safe area.”