BCA submits report to Dakota County Attorney for review
The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension has finished its investigation into the death of Isak Aden, 23, of Columbia Heights, on July 2, in Eagan.
Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom said the files have been handed over to his office as of Sept. 3, and it will take three to four weeks to review.
Not everyone is happy with the process so far.
Jaylani Hussein, of the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, requested during a press conference Sept. 4 that the case be handed over to an independent prosecutor instead of Backstrom.
Hussein said that Backstrom hasn’t met with the family as of Sept. 4.
Backstrom wrote in a news release that he has no conflict of interest in connection with this case. The officers involved are employed by the cities of Eagan and Bloomington. The BCA is an independent state agency.
“We will review all of the evidence gathered in this investigation thoroughly, fairly and impartially, and make our decision as soon as possible,” Backstrom wrote.
Backstrom wrote that there are hundreds of reports, statements and multiple videos in the investigation file.
Before releasing the decision to the public, Backstrom wrote that they will meet with Aden’s family and attorney if they wish to review the facts and law relating to the case and inform them of their decision.
Once the investigation is complete, the evidence will be made public by the BCA.
The Eagan Police Department released details regarding the incident after CAIR released portions of the information from the Eagan and Bloomington departments Sept. 4.
The information released by the Eagan Police Department included three 911 transcripts, including the transcripts from the initial reporting party, along with the incident report and Officer Jacob Peterson’s personnel file. It was prepared at the request of the family.
Portions of the incident report were redacted by Eagan police because it’s still an open investigation. Additional data was redacted because it was either confidential, private or non-public. CAIR redacted additional portions in its release of the Eagan information at the request of Aden’s family, according to Hussein when questioned later by reporters.
Peterson was identified as one of five officers who fired shots during the incident. Four others were members of the Bloomington Police Department.
Peterson’s file included his training summary, personnel orders and letters of support.
According to call records, the reporting party called the Dakota County Communications center and said a “guy that was with me just pulled a gun on me.”
She identified the man as Isak Aden.
The woman said: “He was making me drive toward somewhere else and I – I literally went in towards a one way and stopped the traffic.”
According to the BCA, responding officers spotted Aden running southeast into a small wooded area near Highway 13 and Silver Bell Road.
There were two other 911 calls at about 6:05 p.m. to report a disturbance on Silver Bell Road and Highway 13 to say there was a car going the wrong way down a road.
“A woman jumped out of their car going the wrong way down the road and the girl came over to my car and said he’s got a gun and he ran into McDonalds,” said one caller.
Law enforcement pursued Aden to a parking lot next to a business on Seneca Road in Eagan.
The BCA reported that officers negotiated with Aden for almost four hours to drop a gun and surrender.
At some point during the negotiations, shots were fired and Aden was struck. Lifesaving measures were attempted on Aden at the scene, and he was later pronounced dead at Regions Hospital in St. Paul.
A handgun and a cartridge casing were found next to Aden. No one else was injured during the incident.
Officers from Apple Valley, Bloomington, Burnsville, Eagan, Edina, Lakeville, the Minnesota State Patrol, Dakota County Sheriff’s Office, and South Metro SWAT Team assisted in the incident.
According to the incident report, once officers arrived at the scene, they had a difficult time getting more information from the woman who initially called 911. When an officer first made contact with the reporting party, the individual “would not tell me what was going on, said she was busy and hung up the phone. I then attempted to call back, but kept getting forwarded voicemail.”
A short while later, she answered and said she was in a safe place. The officer kept knocking on the residence where she was, but no one would answer.
At about 9:35 p.m. about three hours into the standoff, the officer attempted to make contact with the reporting party again. At that time, she provided a brief statement.
The reporting party said they had gotten into an argument. When the reporting party got home from work, Aden was waiting for her.
They were arguing all day.
“She said that she did see a pistol in Mr. Aden’s waistband and that he never pointed the pistol at her. She was unable to elaborate on when exactly she saw the pistol.”
“She said that she was becoming afraid of Mr. Aden, so she turned into oncoming traffic that had a red light and started to flail her arms up in the air in an effort to gain attention from other people in the area.”
After she gave a statement, she was transported to incident command.