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Australian woman died of abdomen wound, medical examiner says

By Ed Adamczyk
Don Damond speaks Monday regarding his fiancee's Justine Damond's death. <a class="tpstyle" href="http://www.kare11.com/news/mpls-police-officer-who-shot-killed-woman-identified/457339023">Screenshot courtesy KARE-TV, Minneapolis</a>
Don Damond speaks Monday regarding his fiancee's Justine Damond's death. Screenshot courtesy KARE-TV, Minneapolis

July 18 (UPI) -- A medical examiner has determined that an unarmed Australian woman killed over the weekend by a Minneapolis police officer died of a gunshot wound to the abdomen.

The announcement by the Hennipin Country medical examiner came late Monday, the same day the officer in question was identified as Mohamed Noor, a two-year veteran of the Minneapolis police force.

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Police and government officials offered few details about the incident until Monday.

Justine Damond, 40, called police on Saturday to report a possible assault near her home in one of the city's safest neighborhoods. Police, whose body cameras were not activated for the incident, arrived and Damond was shot.

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Police Chief Janee Harteau, in her first public comment Monday, said she sought an explanation -- and called on the state's Bureau of Criminal Apprehension for an investigation.

Noor retained a lawyer, Thomas Plunkett, who said that his client "takes these events very seriously. He joined the police force to serve the community and to protect the people he serves. Officer Noor is a caring person with a family he loves, and he empathizes with the loss others are experiencing."

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No weapon was found at the scene, an unidentified BCA spokeswoman confirmed, adding additional mystery to the incident.

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The shooting has made headlines around the world and news of her death has dominated websites, newspapers and broadcasting in Australia, where deadly shootings by police are rare. Numerous Australian broadcasters have visited the neighborhood, reporting on the story and on the collective grief of Damond's neighbors, KARE-TV, Minneapolis, said Tuesday.

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