A campus security guard at a private Catholic university in St. Paul, Minnesota made up a story that he was shot by a black man wearing a hoodie after accidentally discharging his personal handgun while at work, St. Paul police said Wednesday.
Emergency dispatch audio described the supposed suspect as a black man with a "short Afro" in a navy blue sweatshirt, according to the Police Clips website.
This description of the phantom shooter was repeated over police radio, and people who heard it spread the description through social media.
Tyrone Terrill, African American Leadership Council president, said African-American individuals "have been falsely accused throughout history".
A stupid mistake and a racist lie by a campus security guard at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota, turned into a full blown manhunt on Tuesday night for a black perpetrator who simply didn't exist.
"Because he said he was shot, the St. Paul PD is actually looking for a perpetrator who shot somebody, who has a gun", Terrill said. The search continued into Wednesday, when Ahlers told officers that he had accidentally shot himself. "We didn't have the confidence in the description to act on it". "So it's only by the grace of God you didn't have something tragic happen". "No one can ever afford to rest in the pursuit of justice and fairness in our society".
St. Catherine University security officer Brent P. Ahlers may still face other charges besides falsely reporting a crime after he made up a gun-toting black man to cover for his own inability to somehow not shoot himself.
A St. Paul, Minn., police spokesman speaks at a press conference September 13, 2017, announcing the arrest of Brent Ahlers for fabricating a story about a nonexistent black shooter.
"When they were approached, they were approached with guns drawn". Everyone was so on edge and high-alert. But the department says no officers submitted any written reports about such contacts.
Ahlers' creation of a black suspect reflects age-old stereotypes, Dianne Binns, president of the St. Paul NAACP, told the newspaper.
Dozens of law enforcement officers searched for a gunman based on his story.