Josh Young, the Minneapolis police officer who killed a motorcyclist on May 10 while racing to the scene of a shooting, will not face charges or discipline. A State Patrol investigation declared the death of Ivan Romero-Olivares a tragic accident.
Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau released details of the investigation, as well as a video of the crash, on Thursday.
Reconstructing the crash, Harteau said that Romero was heading towards the intersection a few miles over the speed limit. Young went through a red light in his squad SUV, and failed to check if there were vehicles in the intersection. The vehicles collided, and Romero slammed into the rear passenger’s side of the SUV, slipping under the tire. His passenger was injured but survived.
Romero did not have a driver’s license or a motorcycle permit. He was not in control of the bike and failed to brake in time, the investigation concluded.
The crash was found to be the fault of both drivers. Even so, prosecutors decided that Young’s actions did not constitute “gross negligence,” a felony, or even “willful or wanton disregard,” a misdemeanor.
Dave Bicking, a member of Communities United Against Police Brutality, did not agree with the State Patrol’s conclusion. He said the collision could have been avoided, and that Young did not need to rush to the scene of the shooting.
“I think it was really not necessary for the officer not to proceed through that intersection until they got a green light or got a real chance to see what was going on,” he said.
The scene Young was headed to was the result of another chase, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported. In uptown Minneapolis, officers chased burglary suspect Terrance Franklin on foot for 90 minutes. They eventually found him hiding in the basement of a house he’d broken into. A shootout between the officers and Franklin left Franklin dead and two officers wounded.
Franklin’s parents are planning to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the city at the beginning of next year, according to his attorney.