The 15-year-old North Community High School quarterback was shot and killed near his school. The Hill family According to Sahan Journal, Friestleben allegedly encouraged the walkout despite being told not to by the district. Principal Friestleben also walked out with the children during the protest.
The Hennepin County Attorney’s Office has decided not to investigate potential charges against the Minneapolis North Community High School principal.
Last February, Hill and his schoolmates were shot near a bus stop around 12:30 p.m. on Feb. 9, 2022. The high school students had organized a walkout protest to Minneapolis City Hall, protesting the shooting of 22-year-old Amir Locke.
According to William Walker, the family’s attorney said they were seeking an investigation for possible criminal negligence in their son’s death.
“The question is, did she create an unreasonable risk criminally by allowing those kids to leave the school in the middle of the day, and over the objection of the two times the district said no,” Walker said.
Walker believed Friestleben’s actions are a “direct and proximate cause” of his client’s son’s death.
The family proceeded to ask Attorney General Keith Ellison and Hennepin County Attorney Mary Moriarty to press criminal charges and a convening a grand jury.
“It removes any degree of partiality,” Walker said. “What prosecutor wants to have to deal with that type of responsibility?,” he added.
Eric Newmark, a managing partner at the Minneapolis law firm who is not involved in the case said the charges against Friestleben guessed the charges would be extremely unlikely.
“I don’t see any possibility of criminal charges against the principal based on those allegations,” Newmark said.
“If a person creates an unreasonable risk, number one, and two, consciously takes the chance of causing death or great bodily harm, then that’s criminal negligence,” Walker said. “We know that it had to be conscious because they told her beforehand, Don’t do it. We don’t have enough staff.”
Newmark is adamant that the argument will not lead to state charges.
“Simply allowing the students to protest, there’s no possible way a prosecutor would charge, let alone be able to prove that was foreseeable—that the students being outside was going to result in the shooting and death of one of the students,” Newmark added.
The Minneapolis Public Schools settled a $500,000 civil suit with Hill’s family.
Hill’s alleged killer Cody Fohrenkam, is charged with second-degree murder. His jury trial began on Monday morning, with opening statements and Fohrenkam’s testimony.
Tuesday Sheppard, Hill’s mother, was the first to testify in the trial, sharing that he “loved everything, friends, teachers and his sports.”
“A lot of kids wanted to be like him; instead of LeBron James, they wanted to be like Deshaun Hill. That’s how great he was,” Sheppard added.