Saturday shooting injures one, halts Augsburg powwow

The fight sent one man to the hospital and brought and early end to what had been a celebratory gathering.

Ian Larson

A fight that escalated to gunfire just blocks from the University of Minnesota campus Saturday night sent one man to the hospital and brought an early end to a powwow that had been a celebratory and social gathering.

The fight broke out around 7:20 p.m. near Murphy Square Park among people “not associated with Augsburg College or the events at the College,” according to a crime alert sent by email to Augsburg students.

During the fight, a 22-year-old Wahkon, Minn., man was grazed by a bullet and was later taken to Hennepin County Medical Center. The shooter fled the area, but Minneapolis police arrested several people, according to the alert.

Minneapolis police Sgt. Bill Palmer said MPD suspects the shooting might have been related to the powwow but did not give further details.

Around 8 p.m., at least a dozen squad cars choked the streets around the Kennedy Center, where the tribal gathering had been going on since early afternoon.

Spectators and dancers decked in traditional regalia began slowly filtering out of the building after the emcee announced the ceremony would end two hours early over safety concerns.

Many were disappointed by the abrupt end to the powwow, which is the third to be hosted on the collegeâÄôs campus by the Augsburg Indigenous Student Association. Staff at the scene speculated that it wouldnâÄôt be rescheduled, but another powwow had been slated for March 31 next year.

“Why donâÄôt you goddamn gangsters learn to behave?” one teenaged attendee shouted to no one in particular as he left the Kennedy Center.

Josh Sweeney, an Augsburg sophomore who was working at a lacrosse referee clinic nearby, said he heard a burst of six pops around 7:30 p.m. but didnâÄôt immediately suspect gunfire.

Sweeney said Saturday night that he expected to learn more about the incident from an Augsburg crime alert.

“They send us something almost every day,” he said.

-Luke Feuerherm contributed to this report.