Posted on June 1, 2023

Melee, Stabbing, and Shots Fired at Washburn HS Somali Culture Night

Crime Watch MN, May 27, 2023

Mayhem erupted at a south Minneapolis high school Thursday evening during a planned Somali cultural event and performance that resulted in fights, a stabbing, and shots fired.

According to dispatch audio at the time, one person was reportedly stabbed around 7:45 p.m. during a fight involving about 50 people at Washburn High School located at 201 West 49th Street.

As police arrived to respond to the fight, an officer called out over the air that shots had been fired, and a city-wide officer help call was toned by the dispatcher. Several squads responded from across the city as well as state troopers, Hennepin County deputies, and officers from Edina and Richfield police departments.

The school was hosting a Somali Culture Night performance in the auditorium {snip}


Minneapolis Police Chief Brian O’Hara held a press conference following the series of events during which he confirmed that an officer responding to the fight had heard gunfire near Busch Terrace and Pleasant Avenue. At least three spent shell casings were later found by police at that location. Chief O’Hara said the officer was unsure whether shots were being directed at him {snip}

Chief O’Hara said that a 16-year-old male was eventually arrested in connection to the shots fired, and a Glock handgun with a 50-round drum magazine was recovered by police. A second 17-year-old suspect who was running with the suspect was also detained, he said.


The school noted that neither the two people injured nor the two suspects were Washburn High School students. {snip}

The school message also said that future Somali Culture Night performances will be held next year, but the school will work to “better control who comes in” to the events.

There had been several reports earlier in the afternoon Thursday of juveniles fighting and causing problems along Nicollet Avenue near the high school, according to dispatch audio. Dispatch aired to police at about 3:35 p.m. that there were reports of 30 to 50 juveniles fighting in the street near 46th and Nicollet Avenue. One 911 caller said they thought some parties had guns. Around 4:24 p.m., the dispatcher aired another report of a group of male teens with bats trying to break down a door on the 4400 block of Nicollet Avenue, as well as another report of about 20 teens fighting near 45th and Nicollet Avenue. One teen in the fighting incident was reported to have a knife. {snip}