Winston Smith Vigil Met with Armed Guards

Four months after Winston Smith was shot by members of a U.S. Marshals task force, his family continues to seek an explanation for his death. 

Feven Gerezgiher reports:


Dozens of people gathered in Uptown Minneapolis Sunday to mark the death of Winston Smith Jr, who was shot by members of a U.S. Marshals task force four months ago. 


Attendees were met with a military vehicle and armed guards. Multiple sources said private security played Martin Luther King speeches on loudspeakers and flashed bright lights.


Smith’s brother Kidale says his family has been gathering with community members at the corner of Lake St and Girard Ave every month on the 3rd to remind the public that they are still waiting for answers as to what happened.


“We have been out here every single month and we know that the people of Uptown have heard and seen and now it gets to the point where Uptown you are now being irresponsible for not bringing out the information that is needed. We know there are witnesses out here,” he said.


Last week, Crow Wing County Attorney Donald Ryan announced he would review Smith’s case to see if it merited charges against the involved officers. Hennepin County deferred the case to the Central Minnesota prosecutor to avoid conflicts of interest.


In the wake of Smith’s death, Seven Points – which owns the parking garage where Smith was killed – hired private security to guard the garage. In July, community members raised concerns after a video showed members of the private security team assaulting a woman. Seven Points did not respond to media requests. 


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