5 Shot Near 'Black Lives Matter' Protest
Witnesses say white supremacists opened fire after lurking for days
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 24, 2015 8:03 AM CST
A Minneapolis police officer maintains a barricade outside the Minneapolis Police Department's Fourth Precinct building in Minneapolis on Wednesday.   (John Autey/Pioneer Press via AP)

(Newser) – Minneapolis cops are seeking three white male suspects after a Monday night shooting that injured five near a "Black Lives Matter" protest outside the Fourth Precinct police station, reports the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Per Black Lives Matter rep Miski Noor, "a group of white supremacists showed up at the protest, as they have done most nights." The New York Times cites witness reports that the suspects—some say two white men and one Asian man—were masked; bystanders claim the trio was wearing bulletproof vests, and Noor says one man was "shouting the n-word," per the New York Daily News. She notes the group "opened fire on about six protesters" after they tried to move the group away. The suspects fled, and a police rep says the five victims were taken to local hospitals for non-life-threatening injuries. "I am obviously appalled that white supremacists would open fire on nonviolent, peaceful protesters," the Minneapolis NAACP president tells the Star Tribune.

The protesters have camped out in front of the police station since the fatal shooting of 24-year-old Jamar Clark earlier this month, the Star Tribune notes. But while the interloping group reportedly made previous appearances, a community activist describes the scene as becoming "really chaotic, really fast" and notes that when he heard what sounded like firecrackers, he thought, "Surely they're not shooting human beings." The Minneapolis chapter of Black Lives Matter has renounced the shootings as "white supremacist terrorism," per the Daily News. Meanwhile, in a statement issued through Rep. Keith Ellison's office, Clark's brother thanked those who've supported his family, but notes that "in light of [the] shootings, the family feels out of imminent concern for the safety of the occupiers, we must get the occupation of the 4th precinct ended and onto the next step," the AP reports. (A BLM activist was roughed up at a Donald Trump rally.)