Minneapolis shooting followed ‘loud sound’ near car

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Latest on the fatal shooting of an Australian woman by police in Minneapolis (all times local):

6:40 p.m.

Investigators say the fatal shooting of an Australian woman by a Minneapolis police officer came right after officers were startled by a loud sound near their patrol vehicle.

Tuesday’s update from state investigators came three days after Justine Damond was shot and killed by officers responding to her 911 call. Damond had called about a possible sexual assault in the alley behind her house.

The update from Minnesota’s Bureau of Criminal Apprehension said officer Mohamed Noor, who was sitting in the passenger seat, fired past his partner and hit Damond in the abdomen as she approached the driver’s side.

The update said Noor has declined to be interviewed by investigators.

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6:05 p.m.

Family and friends of Justine Damond have gathered on a Sydney beach to pay silent tribute to the Australian shot dead by Minneapolis police.

Dozens carried candles in the early morning light on Freshwater Beach and each mourner tossed a single pink blossom into the Pacific Ocean. Pink was the 40-year-old mediation teacher’s favorite color. Almost 300 people gathered for the memorial.

The family, led by Damond’s father John Ruszczyk, said in a statement: “We’re here to come together as a community around our beautiful Justine to honor her life, share our love and mourn her death.”

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5 p.m.

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is joining those demanding answers in the fatal shooting of an Australian woman by police in Minneapolis.

In an interview on Australia’s Today Show on Wednesday, Turnbull called the death of Justine Damond “a shocking killing.”

Damond was shot by a police officer Saturday night after she called 911 to report what she believed was an active sexual assault. The shooting is being investigated by state authorities, who have yet to officially identify officers or give a narrative of what happened.

Turnbull says he’s demanding answers on behalf of Damond’s family. He says something “clearly went tragically wrong.”

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3:30 p.m.

The Minneapolis police officer who shot and killed an Australian woman in an alley is a young Somali-American who felt called to work in law enforcement after getting a college degree in business.

Thirty-two-year-old Mohamed Noor joined the police force two years ago. He is among more Somalis hired in recent years as the department tries to diversify. To those in Minnesota’s Somali community, he was seen as a role model, and his hiring was celebrated.

Noor is now on paid administrative leave as authorities investigate why he shot 40-year-old Justine Damond, a meditation teacher.

Damond’s fiancé said she called 911 late Saturday about what she believed was an active sexual assault. She was reportedly standing outside the driver’s side of a squad car when she was shot in the abdomen.

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12:10 a.m.

An Australian woman who called 911 to report what she believed to be an active sexual assault was shot and killed by a Minneapolis police officer.

Authorities have released no details about what led to Saturday’s shooting of Justine Damond. The meditation teacher and bride-to-be was killed by an officer who reportedly fired his weapon from the passenger seat of a squad car.

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s office says Damond died of a gunshot wound to the abdomen. Her death was ruled a homicide.

Her fiancé, Don Damond, says the family has been given almost no additional information.

Local media identified the officer who fired his gun as Mohamed Noor, a Somali-American. He joined the police department in March 2015.

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