Report: Woman slapped Minneapolis cruiser before she was fatally shot
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. — The “loud sound” one of the Minneapolis police officers heard before Justine Ruszczyk was fatally shot may have been a slap, according to a recently revealed search warrant.
In an interview with investigators last week, Officer Michael Harrity said he heard the sound near the squad car. Moments later, investigators say Ruszczyk approached the driver’s side window of the car, and was fatally shot by Officer Mohamed Noor, who was sitting in the passenger seat.
The source of the sound may have been Ruszczyk slapping the police car, according to the warrant obtained from Hennepin County District Court by Minneapolis Public Radio and the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
The new detail may help explain what led to the July 15 fatal shooting of Ruszczyk, a 40-year-old Australian bride-to-be. Ruszczyk had called 911 about 11:30 p.m. on that Saturday night and asked police to investigate a possible sexual assault in the alley near her residence.
A police squad car with officers Harrity and Noor arrived on the scene. Less than 30 minutes later, Ruszczyk died of a single gunshot wound to the abdomen.
It’s still not clear what happened in those moments. The officers’ body cameras were not turned on and the shooting was not captured on the squad car camera, investigators with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension said.
The shooting has caused outrage in the United States and in Australia and led to the resignation of the department’s police chief.
Harrity and Noor are on standard administrative leave during the investigation.
Recently Officer Noor requested that an unauthorized GoFundMe page to raise money for him be taken down.
His attorney says he didn’t authorize the fundraiser and asked that the page be removed.
Attorney Thomas Plunkett says Noor has also asked that any money raised be returned to donors.
Plunkett says his client “did not authorize this, he did not provide the photograph which appears in the fundraiser and he is not the recipient of the funds.”
The page was removed by noon Tuesday. Plunkett says two similar pages have also been removed.