The Boise Police Department is facing criticisms over a recent officer-involved shooting with a Somali refugee.

Members of the refugee community protested outside the Boise Police Department this week. They tell the Idaho Statesman that they believe the arrest and shootings wouldn't have happened if the suspect was white or had a mental illness.  

Boise Mayor Lauren McClean was photographed speaking to the group during their protests. We did not see the mayor meeting with the police or issue a press release on the shooting. McClean is the mayor who allowed the Fourth of July parade to be canceled after years and years of providing patriotic spirit to Boise.   

Here's what the police have told us via a media release:

This afternoon Boise Police began investigating a report of a child abduction near State St. and N. North St. The suspect, who is known to the family, reportedly entered a residence and left with a 14-year-old male. Based on evidence officers believed the boy was in immediate danger and began an investigation to find him. Detectives were called to the scene and an Amber Alert was in the process of being issued when patrol officers located the suspect's vehicle not far from the original call location around 6:25 p.m.. Officers attempted a traffic stop and the suspect's vehicle continued to flee. Officers could see a person matching the missing child's description in the vehicle as well as what they believed to be a weapon. Officers performed a PIT maneuver stopping the suspect's vehicle in the area of N. 36th Street and W. Eyrie Way. Officers confronted the suspect and due to the immediate danger presented by the suspect officers were forced to fire their weapons. Officers immediately began performing life-saving measures on the suspect and ensured the safety of the child in the vehicle. The suspect was taken to the hospital. The child was medically evaluated and is safe. No officers were injured in the incident.

The Ada County Critical Incident Task Force (CITF) led by the Garden City Police Department has been activated to investigate the shooting. Officers body camera video will be reviewed as part of the investigation. The information in this news release is considered preliminary pending the results of the CITF investigation.

The 33-year-old suspect has been identified by the police as Mohamud Mkoma. He was charged with the following crimes: Lewd Conduct with a minor under sixteen (F)- 3 counts, Aggravated Assault (F), Aggravated Assault on Law Enforcement Personnel (F), Use of a Firearm or Deadly Weapon during the commission of a crime (F), Unlawful entry (m), Malicious injury to property (m), Eluding a peace officer (m), Violation of a protection order (m)

For many years, Boise and the surrounding communities have enjoyed a relatively violent crime-free run over several years. The police cannot speak up for themselves, and yes, everyone is innocent until proven guilty.  However, we're living in a world where the television shows Cops and the First 48 were cancelled.

We have an outstanding law enforcement community in Idaho. Because of the work of those officers and their families' sacrifices, Boise, Meridian, and Nampa do not face the same challenges as Los Angeles, Portland, and Seattle.  

In the era of the let's defund the police, we stand proudly with the police in our state. Just as our justice system will not rush to judgment to convict the accused, we should give our police officers the same benefit of the doubt. Thank you all for protecting and serving.

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