Minnesota teen gets 4 years as accomplice in fatal robbery that led to police shooting of Amir Locke

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A teenager has been sentenced to four years for his role in a St. Paul killing that prompted police in Minneapolis to execute a search warrant that led to the fatal shooting of Amir Locke by a police officer in a case that focused scrutiny on the use of no-knock warrants.

Feysal Jama Ali, 18, of Minneapolis, pleaded guilty earlier to being an accomplice after the fact in the killing of Otis Elder, 38, of St. Paul, during a marijuana deal Jan. 10, 2022. Ali was sentenced Wednesday as part of his plea deal.

Ali’s cousin, Mekhi Camden Speed, then 17, shot Elder. Speed pleaded guilty and was sentenced in July to over 16 years after pleading guilty to aiding and abetting second-degree unintentional murder while committing an armed robbery.

Speed lived in an apartment building in downtown Minneapolis where police served search warrants Feb. 2, 2022. Locke, 22, who was not named in the warrants, was sleeping on a couch in Speed’s brother’s girlfriend’s separate unit when a SWAT team burst in, looking for Speed.

A Minneapolis officer shot Locke as he emerged from under a blanket with a handgun that his family said he was licensed to carry. Prosecutors did not charge the officer who shot him, saying it was justified because Locke pointed his gun at the officer. Locke’s family has said body camera video suggests he was startled awake. They have campaigned since then for a ban on no-knock warrants.

Locke was killed while three former Minneapolis police officers were on trial in federal court in St. Paul on civil rights charges in the killing of George Floyd, a case that forced a racial reckoning and focused attention of the use of force by police.

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