US Minnesota man accused of dragging, assaulting police officer in mask dispute
Minneapolis officers line up to reject Chauvin's actions
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The parade of Minneapolis police officers rejecting a former officer’s actions in restraining George Floyd continued at his murder trial, including a use-of-force instructor who said officers were coached to “stay away from the neck when possible.” Lt. Johnny Mercil on Tuesday became the latest member of the Minneapolis force to take the stand as part of an effort by prosecutors to dismantle the argument that Derek Chauvin was doing what he was trained to do when he put his knee on George Floyd’s neck last May.
A 61-year-old Minnesota man is in police custody after dragging a police officer with his car and assaulting him with a hammer following a report of an assault that began as a mask dispute, police say.
Police were called to a Menards store on Wednesday after the suspect, identified as Luke Alvin Oeltjenbruns, allegedly attacked an employee with lumber amid a mask dispute, the Hutchinson Police Department. When police arrived, they found Oeltjenbruns in a nearby Walmart parking lot, police said.
As the officer, Steven Sickmann, approached, Oeltjenbruns tried to evade him in a slow-speed car chase that ended near a local mall, police said. When Sickmann exited his vehicle to confront Oeltjenbruns, he became trapped in the driver's-side window of Oeltjenbruns' car.
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The police shooting of Daunte Wright during a traffic stop prompted protests Sunday amid an already tense Minnesota during the trial of Derek Chauvin.Daunte Wright's death in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, comes as Minneapolis, just 10 miles south, was already on edge in the middle of the trial of former police officer Derek Chauvin, facing murder charges in the death of George Floyd.
Oeltjenbruns then took off, dragging Sickmann down the road at a high speed, according to police. The officer was also struck with a hammer in the struggle.
Police eventually apprehended Oeltjenbruns, who was arrested at the scene, police said. Sickmann was taken to a nearby hospital and treated for his injuries.
The incident happened roughly 60 miles west of where George Floyd and Daunte Wright, both Black men, were killed at the hands of police officers. Benjamin Crump, an attorney representing the families of Floyd and Wright,: "Yesterday a white man in Minnesota assaults a retail worker, rams into a police car, hits a cop in the head with a HAMMER, then drives off with the cop STILL ATTACHED to his vehicle. Was he shot? NO. Was he tased? NO. What a stark contrast to ..."
The McLeod County Sheriff’s Office is leading the investigation of the incident.
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