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Minneapolis mayor calls police shooting of Australian woman 'awful and disturbing

Questions are still swirling after 40-year-old Justine Damond — a yoga and meditation teacher from Australia who was set to be married next month — was fatally shot by a Minneapolis police officer Saturday night. (Image source: YouTube screenshot)

Betsy Hodges, the mayor of Minneapolis, was interviewed on ABC's "Good Morning America" Tuesday about the controversial police shooting over the weekend that resulted in the death of Australian Justine Damond.

"We appreciate you spending some time with us because we don't have to tell you the grief," said ABC host Robin Roberts, "the outrage. This happened on Saturday, still no explanation as to how, or why this happened. Are you satisfied with how police and investigators are handling this, thus far?"

"Well, first I have to agree with you this is just a devastating thing for our community, for the country, for the world, really. It's just tragic and awful and disturbing," Hodges responded.

"And we as a city have a policy now that we do not investigate ourselves," she explained, "and so in critical incidences like this, so the State Bureau of Criminal Apprehensions took over right away. They have been the lead investigator. I encourage them to give as much information as swiftly as possible, but not compromising the investigation."

"But I have the same questions everybody has — what happened?" she said.

"But you're the mayor, and the family of Justine," Roberts pressed, "aren't they deserving of some explanation at this point? Something?"

"Yes," Hodges agreed. "I mean I've spoken to her fiance. You know he has the same questions everyone has, but we need to make sure there's an investigation so we can answer those questions thoroughly and well whatever happens."

"But I don't know what the answers are. That's the trade off of an independent investigation. We aren't in charge of it."

When asked why the police officers had their bodycams turned off, she responded, "I don't know why it wasn't turned on. I don't what happened. That's one of the key questions that we have as this, as the investigation moves forward."

She indicated that she didn't know if the cameras were ever turned on, even after the shooting.

Damond, 40, was shot and killed by a policeman in an alley near her home. She had called the police to report a possible sexual assault outside, but when she walked up to the patrol car that responded, Officer Mohamed Noor shot her through the driver's window, hitting Damond fatally.

Damond, a yoga and meditation teacher, had planned to get married next month.

One last thing…
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