Second Ward, Minneapolis

This is the public policy forum of Minneapolis Second Ward (Green) City Council Member Cam Gordon and his staff. We use this space to talk about some of what Cam’s working on, explain his positions, and share a little of what life in City Hall is like. Please feel free to comment on posts, within certain ground rules. See our disclaimer, including ground rules, here:

Friday, January 15, 2010

Charges Filed in Seward Market Murders

As you can read here, the suspects in the Seward Market tragedy have been charged with first degree murder. The young men, named Mahdi Hassan Ali and Ahmed Abdi Ali (no relation), are both 17 years old.

I commend the Police Department for making these arrests so quickly, and enabling these charges to move forward. I also thank the Somali community for working collaboratively with the police. We could not have made so much progress so quickly without the active cooperation of the community.

Now that arrests have been made and charges have been filed, I will be working to put together an after-the-fact deconstruction of this tragedy, to find the areas in which our society - City, schools, families, everyone - failed both the victims of this crime and the perpetrators. This is a model that I have been advocating for some time as an integral part of our youth violence prevention work. A deconstruction of this sort will attempt to answer vital questions such as: where did these young people get guns? Was the educational system working for them? Was there a point at which the City or some other unit of government could have intervened, and did not?

This horrific act of violence has led me to rededicate myself to the cause of youth violence prevention as one of my top priorities for this term in office. We simply must, as a City and as a society, find ways to raise whole, healthy people who do not perpetrate such tragedies.


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