Protests were held in Austin, Minnesota in the United States on Thursday, December 30, 2021, in response to the death of a 38-year-old man believed to be a Togolese. Kokou Christopher Fiafonou was killed on December 23 by Austin police officer Zachary Gast.
US investigators have identified the policeman who shot the man after a standoff of more than 24 hours.
Gast has worked in the Austin department for two years. He is on paid administrative leave, which is standard procedure following a police shootout.
Investigators identified the man he was eliminated as Kokou Christopher Fiafonou, 38, of Austin. According to a medical examiner’s office.
Fiafonou died of several gunshot wounds. However, a knife was found near his body, investigators noted.
While officers from the Austin Police Department do not wear body cameras, parts of the incident were captured by a board camera, investigators said.
Austin police said the shooting occurred following a standoff that began in the afternoon of Wednesday, December 22, 2021. Officers were called to the area after reports that someone was in circulation with a machete in hand.
Officers confronted Fiadonu, but he rushed into a house. they tried to shock him with Tasers, but it was also to no avail.
Police said Fiafonou threatened to injure people before retreating to a nearby apartment building. For more than a day, officers attempted to force him out of the building, trying to subdue him with pepper spray and foam bullets.
On Thursday, December 23, during the night, Fiafonou left the apartment and went to a nearby gas station. The officers followed him. In the parking lot, he clashed with police while carrying a knife, police said. This time Gast fired. Fiafonou died at the scene.
The victim is said to have mental health problems
In an online fundraiser for funeral expenses, a person identifying themselves as a relative of Fiafonou said his cousin has mental health issues and the police should have sought medical assistance instead of trying to. overpower by force. They said he didn’t deserve to be shot.
The BCA’s investigation into the police shooting is still ongoing. Once completed, the results will be sent to the Mower County District Attorney’s Office for review and possible charges.
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