Minneapolis violence ends another young life
An 18-year-old man shot earlier this week in north Minneapolis has died, and two 17-year-old boys have been arrested in the killing, police said Friday.
The shooting occurred at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday in an alley behind the Church of St. Bridget at 3811 Emerson Av. N. Police and other emergency responders found the man on the ground and unresponsive, said police Sgt. Stephen McCarty.
The victim was taken to North Memorial Medical Center in Robbinsdale, where he died the next day. Police did not disclose what led to the shooting. Authorities have yet to release his identity, but his friends confirmed that he was Keontrell Govan, 18.
Govan spent days at the basketball courts, said his friend Jafaria Listenbee. "He was a hooper and a lady's man. Definitely a rapper," said Listenbee.
He said he last saw Govan two weeks ago when they played basketball. Everything seemed fine at the time, said Listenbee, who added that he doesn't think Govan was the shooter's intended target. "He was on the right track," said Listenbee. "He wasn't thinking no negative stuff."
Govan was friends with Anthony Titus, a popular 16-year-old killed last July 4 by a gunman who shot randomly toward Titus and his friends.
"[Govan] was actually like my brother's best friend," said Jessie McDaniel, Titus's older brother. "Every time I seen him he would be talking about my brother, how he missed the old days. He was definitely still mourning the loss of my brother."
Govan was homeless last fall and needed help moving into a new place, said Sy Huff, a disc jockey known as "Big Sy" on KMOJ Radio. Huff was among those who helped Govan at the time.
Minneapolis youth worker Sarah Klouda said she knew Govan as someone who was largely on his own.
"I was definitely worried about him not having a stable place to live, kind of being day by day not knowing where you're going to be at," she said. Govan's mother died in 2005, according to public records. His father has an extensive criminal record and was in prison as recently as 2004, records say. He could not be located Friday.
Klouda, who works at the Oak Park Neighborhood Center on the North Side, said she saw Govan's death as evidence of the need for more support for troubled kids.
"If we as a community continue to accept violence as a way of life, it will never end," she said. "These kids are reaching out for help, and not enough people are reaching back."
Three shots rang outA man who lives near the scene said he was working in his garage when he heard three shots. "I looked up and saw some kids running," said Charlie Lee. He moved into the neighborhood eight months ago with his family, including three teenagers.
Lee said he was shocked after moving into the house to find bullet holes in the garage walls. Wednesday's shooting had him thinking about moving away.
"I don't like this," he said.
Huff said the shooting set off at least two retaliatory shootings between street gangs.
"It's been a mess since then," he said. Rumors about the shootings have quickly circulated, causing Huff to fear that some kids may spread false information that prompts more violence.
Meanwhile, two young men who belong to the Tre's gang went to Huff to tell him they had thrown out four handguns, saying they didn't want to get involved with what they saw as a rekindled turf battle.
"I don't know what the summer's going to bring," Huff said.
Funeral arrangements for Govan are pending.
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
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