Klobuchar requests independent probe of murder case from 2002: report

Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharCalifornia Dems back Yang after he expresses disappointment over initial DNC lineup Senate Democrats demand answers on migrant child trafficking during pandemic Senate Democrats push to include free phone calls for incarcerated people in next relief package MORE (D-Minn.) is asking for an independent review of the case of Myon Burrell, a black teenager sentenced to life after an 11-year-old black girl was killed in 2002 by a stray bullet during her time as the county’s top prosecutor, according to the Minnesota Star Tribune.

The move comes days after the senator suspended her presidential campaign and weeks after The Associated Press published an investigation into Klobuchar’s role in Burell’s case. The report suggested Burrell, now 34, was sentenced to life in prison without significant evidence against him and despite witnesses saying he was not there. 

"As you are aware, significant concerns about the evidence and police investigation have been raised by a press investigation, by members of the Hennepin County community, and by Myon's family," Klobuchar wrote to Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman, according to the Star Tribune. "For that reason I believe that your office should initiate an independent review of the case and the evidence."

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Burrell was first convicted when Klobuchar was Hennepin County Attorney in 2003, though the second time he was convicted after filing an appeal, Klobuchar was no longer in office.

According to the Star Tribune, Freeman responded to Klobuchar’s letter saying an investigation is ongoing. 

In the weeks leading up to her exit from the race, local civil rights activists called for her to suspend the campaign prematurely due to the details regarding Burrell's case and her prosecutorial record.

Nekima Levy-Armstrong, a civil rights attorney and activist, said she met with Klobuchar Thursday alongside Burrell's family and Minneapolis NAACP President Leslie Redmond. 

“This was the most sincere response that I have seen from Sen. Klobuchar since concerns have been raised about the wrongful conviction of Myon Burrell,” she told the Star Tribune.

Klobuchar’s office did not immediately respond to an inquiry from The Hill.