A woman died and three other people were injured after a car plowed into a group of protestors in the Uptown neighborhood of Minneapolis on Sunday evening. The incident happened just before midnight at the intersection of West Lake Street and South Girard Avenue, near the site where Winston Smith was fatally shot by police earlier this month. A group of demonstrators had gathered for a vigil against police brutality when the driver of an SUV struck a parked car that was positioned to protect the group, sending it into the crowd instead. Witnesses say the driver appeared to speed up as the car got closer. Police say the driver appeared to have been under the influence of drugs or alcohol. The investigation is ongoing.
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The woman was taken to HCMC, where she later died. A second protestor, who was also struck, was taken to HCMC as well. Two other protestors sought medical treatment at nearby hospitals. The car’s driver was hospitalized after some of the protestors “began to strike” him, says police. Videos posted on social media of the scene show the man saying “I didn’t mean to.”
The woman who was killed, Deona Knajdek, was about to celebrate her 32nd birthday. Her brother Garrett Knajdek, told the Star Tribune, “She constantly (was) sacrificing herself for everyone around her… no matter the cost, obviously.” Deona managed a group home where she was a devoted caregiver. She was a mother to two girls, ages 13 and eight.
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