On Wednesday night, riots and protests erupted again after the city of Minneapolis and Seven Points Uptown decided to remove the “peace garden” where a memorial for Winston Smith was located. The garden, also known as Boogie World, was a second autonomous zone established in Minneapolis after a wanted man, Smith, was shot and killed by U.S. Marshals on June 3. As reported by The Minnesota Sun, “Smith had multiple warrants out for his arrest and refused to comply with the U.S. Marshals who were attempting to arrest him. He allegedly pulled a gun and shot. The officers returned fire and Smith was pronounced dead at the scene.”
According to Crime Watch Minneapolis, instigators were blocking streets with trash cans and other barricades. They also tipped dumpsters over into the roads, “taking anything they can find” and throwing it out into the roads. According to another source, they “emptied hundreds of trash bins onto the street and public works had to be brought in the middle of the night to clear it up.”
Another local shared on the Facebook group Uptown Crime that “All hell broke loose at Lake/Girard around 8:58pm. It went from there. 5th Precinct was locked down at 9:01pm. One suspect was arrested with a gun. Sanitation was requested for every block west of Pleasant/27th to clean up debris.”
In video footage from a local Uptown resident, Steve Taylor, helicopters can be heard circling over the Uptown area of Lake and Girard.
Some sources said that police cleared the area of agitators and kept spotlights on the empty lot formerly occupied by protesters. Crime Watch Minneapolis stated that “arrests will commence.”
Arrests reportedly will commence.
— CrimeWatchMpls (@CrimeWatchMpls) July 15, 2021
Violence and crime have been an increasing issue in the Uptown neighborhoods since June, even causing some businesses to be shuttered for good. The rising crime rate also caused the cancellation of the 2021 Uptown Art Fair.
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Hayley Tschetter is a reporter with The Minnesota Sun | Star News Network and The College Fix. She graduated with a degree in Communications from the University of Northwestern-St. Paul. Send news tips to [email protected]
Photo “Winston Smith Memorial Garden Clearing” by Chad Davis. CC BY 2.0.