Tekle was fatally shot on his mother’s birthday by Minneapolis Police officers following a 6-hour stand off at his apartment where his parents say they were denied the opportunity to intervene.
“He was in a mental health crisis. He needed help,” says Cindy Sundberg.
Cindy and her husband Mark, who are white, adopted Tekle from Ethiopia when he was four. Cindy believes if it had been one of her biological children having a mental health crisis the outcome would have been different.
“Everyone knows had it have been a white person in that situation they would have talked them out. People who go in and shoot massive amounts of people are arrested safely and alive if they’re white. If they’re not white we know the outcome they’re dead. It’s all about the lack of humanity of a Black body and it’s wrong it has to stop.”
Cindy and Mark were allowed to go to the scene during the standoff that started Wednesday July 13 and ended around 4:30 am on July 14. While there they made several attempts to ask police if they could go to their son’s door or to his window to help de-escalate the situation.
“I could have gone to that door within the first ten minutes that we got there and this wouldn’t have happened,” says Mark whose wife says that every time they got a chance to speak to Tekle the police instructed them of what they could and could not say.
The city of Minneapolis published a 28 page incident report with details about what happened however, 25 pages are redacted. The BCA is currently investigating the case. The family is being represented by Attorney Jeff Storms.
A rally will be held for Tekle 3pm on Saturday in front of his apartment on the 900 block of 21st Ave.