Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

At Funeral for Slain Minneapolis Man, Vow to Keep Protesting

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

At Funeral for Slain Minneapolis Man, Vow to Keep Protesting

Article excerpt

MINNEAPOLIS * Hundreds of people filled a church in northern Minneapolis on Wednesday to pay their respects to a man whose death in a confrontation with police sparked more than a week of ongoing protests, as charges were pending against four men suspected in a melee that left five protesters with gunshot wounds.

A picture of a smiling Jamar Clark, 24, adorned the program for his funeral at the cavernous Shiloh Temple International Ministries. Inside, his obituary said he "liked to swim, fish, listen to music, play basketball, be with family and take trips to Charlotte, N.C."

Impassioned speeches from his relatives and pastors were occasionally interrupted by shouts and applause. The service also included a slideshow of pictures of Clark as he grew up. Several members of Clark's family wore white T-shirts that read, "I matter," on the front with Clark's picture on the back.

"I'm still hurt," said his sister, Sharice Burns. "I'm still suffering. We need justice sooner rather than later."

Clark, who was black, died Nov. 15 in what police say was a scuffle with officers responding to an assault of a woman in which he was a suspect.

Some area residents who say they saw the incident allege Clark was handcuffed when he was shot, which police have disputed.

A state criminal investigation and a federal civil rights investigation are underway.

Bishop Richard Howell praised protesters for pressure that he said helped get a federal civil rights investigation and the names of the officers involved. Howell said what was needed now was a special state legislative session to address the needs of Minnesota's minority population.

"Jamar, your life did and does have purpose," he said to a standing ovation. "Your death is not in vain."

The funeral procession went past the 4th Precinct police station, where Black Lives Matters activists and others have been camped out for days protesting Clark's death. Vehicles honked their horns, and protesters shouted "Justice for Jamar" in return. …

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