The Associated Press reports that Mohamed Noor, a former Minneapolis police officer who was found guilty of killing a woman after responding to a 911 call, will be released from prison on Monday.
After the Minnesota Supreme Court overturned his murder conviction in the 2017 shooting death of American-Australian citizen Justine Ruszczyk Damond, Noor will soon be released from prison. Noor was found guilty of third-degree murder and manslaughter, and he was given a sentence of 12 and a half years in prison at first. But once the conviction for third-degree murder was overturned, the Somali American’s sentence was lowered to four years and nine months.
According to Minnesota state law, convicts who behave well while incarcerated are eligible for release after completing two-thirds of their sentence. They are on supervised release for the remainder of their sentence. According to the DOC’s website, Noor is anticipated to finish his supervised release on January 24th, 2024.
John Ruszczyk, Damond’s father, expressed his displeasure at Noor’s release by saying it “shows great disrespect to the wishes of the jury who represented the communities of Minneapolis and their wish to make a statement about the communities’ expectations of police behavior and actions.” Noor was sentenced to a brief jail term.
The deceased woman’s stepmother, Maryan Heffernan, also mentioned how terrible it was for Noor to be freed a few weeks before Damond’s death anniversary.
“We’re quite dissatisfied. However, we are not shocked,” Heffernan remarked. We have been following developments in Minneapolis from a great distance, and we are still perplexed by the charge being dropped and the Minneapolis Police Department’s mentality.
Heffernan also said she feels Noor’s actions were a result of a “very dysfunctional department.”
According to reports, both Australia and the United States expressed outrage over Damond’s shooting death. This led to the resignation of the Minneapolis police chief at the time.
For shooting and killing Damond in 2017, a jury initially found Noor guilty of third-degree murder and manslaughter. In 2017, the deceased White woman reported a probable sexual assault near her home to the police. Noor and his companion arrived on the scene.
Noor testified during the trial about the exact time he shot the 40-year-old yoga instructor and life coach who was killed only one month before her wedding. Noor told the jurors, “If I known this would happen, I would never have become a cop.”
The former officer further asserted that he opened fire out of concern for his partner’s safety. Additionally, he claimed that when Damond approached their squad car, which was parked in a deserted alley, he believed they were being ambushed. Before the incident, Noor had been honored by the municipal government for becoming the first Somali-American police officer in the precinct in a state with a sizable Somali population.
Noor was the first police officer in Minnesota to be found guilty of murder while on the job up until the Supreme Court’s ruling.