Mohamed Noor: Minneapolis police officer who killed Justine Damond released from prison after 3 years
Mohamed Noor, who fatally shot Justine Damond behind her home on the night of July 15, 2017, was released from custody on Monday, June 27, morning. The 36-year-old former police officer was initially sentenced to 12 and a half years in jail in April 2019 after a jury found him guilty of third-degree murder and manslaughter.
But last year, the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled out his murder conviction saying that the murder charge didn't apply to the circumstances of this case. He got resentenced to four years and nine months on the manslaughter charge. And now, he walks free from prison, months after his murder conviction was overturned and he was resentenced on a lesser charge.
Justine's father, John Ruszczyk said in response to Associated Press that the family was disappointed that Noor's third-degree murder conviction was overturned. "His release after a trivial sentence 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," he told. Damond’s stepmother, Maryan Heffernan, said, “We’re very disappointed. But we’re not surprised. We’ve been watching events in Minneapolis from miles away and we’re still bewildered about the charge being dropped and we’re still bewildered about the culture of the Minneapolis Police Department.” She further added by saying that she believes Noor was the product of a “very dysfunctional department.”
According to the Minnesota Department of Corrections, Noor will be on supervised release until January 24, 2024, as per the reports by AP. In Minnesota, it is believed that a defendant with good behavior will serve two-thirds of a sentence in prison and the rest on supervised release, commonly known as parole.
As per Star Tribune, Noor's attorney, Thomas Plunkett, declined to comment post the release of the former police officer. He said, "At this point, we are choosing to respect Mr. Noor's privacy." On the hand, Scott Wasserman, spokesman for Hennepin County corrections, said that those under the agency's supervision "need to check in with their supervised release officer within 24 hours of their release. Within the first 90 days of release, a client must conduct a minimum of five in-person visits with their supervised release officer."
Noor, who was fired from the Minneapolis Police Department after the shooting, was the second officer in Minnesota history to be charged with an on-duty fatal shooting. St Anthony police officer Jeronimo Yanez was acquitted in 2017 in the fatal shooting of Philando Castile during a 2016 traffic stop.