Man Gets 15 Years for Shooting 5 BLM Activists Protesting Police Shooting Death of Jamar Clark

Allen Scarsella (Minneapolis Police Department)

A Minnesota man who shot five Black Lives Matter protesters has been sentenced to 15 years in prison.

CBS News reports that Allen Scarsella, 25, and his crew got into an argument with some protesters who were demonstrating outside a Minneapolis police station after the 2015 shooting death of 24-year-old Jamar Clark by police.

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Eyewitnesses said that Clark was handcuffed when Police Officer Dustin Schwarze shot him in the head. Schwarze faced no criminal charges.

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Scarsella, however, was convicted in February of a dozen felony counts of assault and riot in the November 2015 altercation that left five protesters shot. Of course, Scarsella argued that he had been acting in self-defense.

But since he’s not a police officer, that defense didn’t fly in the Hennepin County, Minn., court where he was sentenced to 15 out of a possible 20 years in prison.

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CBS reports that Scarsella’s lawyer argued his client didn’t know what life was like for black people on the north side of Minneapolis, and that his brain “may not have fully developed” because he was around 22 years old at the time of the shooting.

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The judge, however, was not buying that b.s. and agreed with prosecutors that Scarsella was a good ol’ American, dyed-in-the-wool racist who sent months of racist messages leading up to the shooting.

One of the shooting victims, Cameron Clark, a cousin of the late Jamar Clark, said he believes that initial charges brought forth by the state against Scarsella should have been more severe. Attempted murder, anyone?

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Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said that first-degree assault was the highest charge he could bring, given the evidence.

Read more at CBS News.

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About the author

Angela Helm

Ms. Bronner Helm is a Contributing Editor at The Root. Mouthy Black Girl. Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Fellow. Shea Butter Feminist. Virgo Sun, Aries Moon.