Last September, a young man who was from Somalia living in Minneapolis was murdered by one of the Somalia gangs that call Minneapolis, MN their home. Unfortunately, this has become common in recent years. An estimated 32,000 Somalis have settled in Minnesota along with gangs like the Somali Hot Boyz, the Somali Mafia and Madhibaan with Attitude, all who have grown more active in recent years.
Over a ten-month period, seven Minneapolis area Somalia men have been killed. Police believe fellow Somalis killed them. The Somali community in Minnesota, one of the nation’s largest, is outraged but police and prosecutors are struggling to catch and try the killers. Few witnesses have stepped forward because they fear reprisal and have a deep-rooted distrust of authority.
Sadly, more than half of Minnesota’s Somalis are living in poverty and many complain that they feel that authorities are biased against them because of their Islamic faith. However, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman is hoping that a conviction of even one gang member would show local Somalis that the law is on their side and that they can trust local authority.
Reports from law enforcement throughout the U.S. and Canada also have seen an increase in Somali gang activity. It will take trust and belief that law enforcement is on their side in order to help immigrant Somalis to stop the gang activity in their community.