News World US Minneapolis police chief quits over Justine Damond’s death

US Minneapolis police chief quits over Justine Damond’s death

Janee Harteau
Chief Harteau quit at the request of the city's mayor Betsy Hodges. Photo: AAP
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Minneapolis’ police chief has resigned after the fatal shooting of Australian woman Justine Damond by a police officer.

Police Chief Janee Harteau had been criticised for remaining on holidays for four days in the aftermath of Ms Damond’s shocking death.

Ms Damond was shot by junior officer Mohamed Noor after she called 911 late last Saturday night, fearing a sexual assault was happening in an alleyway behind her house.

Chief Harteau’s decision to step down came just a day after making her first remarks on the death of the 40-year-old.

The Police Chief was out of the city in the days after the shooting, and said on Friday she had been on personal time and was in touch with her command staff.

Justine Damond
The Minneapolis Police Chief told a press conference on Friday the death of Justine Damond “should not have happened”.

“I am proud of the great work the MPD has accomplished … however, last Saturday’s tragedy, as well as some other recent incidents, have caused me to engage in deep reflection,” she said in a statement.

“Despite the MPD’s many accomplishments under my leadership over these years and my love for the City, I have to put the communities we serve first.

“I’ve decided I am willing to step aside to let a fresh set of leadership eyes see what more can be done for the MPD to be the very best it can.”

A statement from the city said Chief Harteau quit at the request of Mayor Betsy Hodges.

“I’ve lost confidence in the Chief’s ability to lead us further — and from the many conversations I’ve had with people around our city, especially this week, it is clear she has lost the confidence of the people of Minneapolis as well,” the Mayor said in a statement.

“For us to continue to transform policing and community trust in policing — we need new leadership at MPD.”