Family of Khalil Azad Expresses Skepticism After Police Release Video
After the release of Robbinsdale police video, the family of Khalil Azad wants more information regarding his death last July.
Robbinsdale police released nearly five hours of bodycam and dashcam footage from the night of July 3. Police were pursuing a suspected drunken driver. Police say the driver hit a curb and a tree before running from the SUV never to be seen again despite efforts that night to find him. Azad’s body was eventually found by a passerby in Crystal Lake two days later.
The family and supporters of Azad held a rally outside the Robbinsdale police station on Wednesday night accusing police of being responsible for Azad’s death and covering it up. They’re now calling for more video to be released from other police agencies involved in the search.
“We want all the bodycam footage, the real stuff, nothing edited and we would also like the timeline reports because the footage we’ve seen has no times or dates,” said Jamal Johnson, one of Khalil’s brothers.
Robbinsdale police say they had to redact all non-law enforcement personnel in the video due to state law.
Other police agencies involved in the search included Plymouth K9 units and a Minnesota State Patrol helicopter. The Hennepin County Medical Examiner ruled the death an accidental drowning. But family members don’t believe that conclusion either and are calling for an outside autopsy review.
Azad’s supporters point to unofficially released autopsy photos that have circulated online.
“You can see the trauma to his head, you could see his broken nose, broken jaw, you could see where the dogs pulled his eye out and that’s not trauma or injury, are you kidding me?” said Joe Bownik, a family friend of Azad.
Azad’s family says the scrutiny the Robbinsdale Police Department is facing is not without precedent.
“Everyone knows not to go through Robbinsdale, everyone’s always known that,” said Fatemeh Azad, Khalil’s mother.
Robbindale police, meanwhile, say they have released everything it legally can. The department also requested an independent investigation by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, something it says it has never done before.
Also See: Robbinsdale Police Request ‘Unprecedented’ State Review in Khalil Azad’s Death