Mother: St. Paul police shot my son 7 times for no reason - Fox 2 News Headlines

Mother: St. Paul police shot my son 7 times for no reason

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Deshawn Nelson, 21 Deshawn Nelson, 21
  • Mother: St. Paul police shot my son 7 times for no reasonMore>>

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    CHARGES: Man shot by St. Paul cop denies having gun

    Tuesday, November 19 2013 9:05 AM EST2013-11-19 14:05:47 GMT
    Charging documents accusing 21-year-old Deshawn Nelson of second-degree assault were released on Monday, explaining that the St. Paul officer who shot him multiple times believed he had a "big handgun."
    Charging documents accusing 21-year-old Deshawn Nelson of second-degree assault were released on Monday, explaining that the St. Paul officer who shot him multiple times believed he had a "big handgun."
ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) -

The family of a Minneapolis man who was shot multiple times by a St. Paul police officer tells Fox 9 News they can't understand why. They only know their loved one is in critical condition.

On Monday, Deshawn Nelson was charged by warrant and ordered to be detained on a count of second-degree assault after a St. Paul sergeant chased him through an alley, opening fire three separate times as Nelson fled.

The charging documents released Monday say the sergeant believed Nelson had a "big handgun" and was pointing it at him, but the 21-year-old's mother doesn't believe it.

"I think they shot my son for no reason, that's what I think," Yolanda Phelps said. "Seven times!"

Phelps doesn't hide the fact that she's frustrated and irritated. Since Nelson was critically injured, she has only been able to see him through a window. She also says St. Paul police investigators have only spoken with her briefly.

"They still say nothing to me," she said. "They say he's under arrest."

Phelps told Fox 9 News she doesn't believe her son would have had a gun on him, and although police did say they recovered a handgun at the scene, they did not say whether it was used.

"He wouldn't do nothing like that," Antonio Thompson, Nelson's brother, insisted. "They can check his history, criminal history. It's squeaky clean. He graduated from high school, was taking care of his son."

It is also unclear whether Nelson was at all linked to the original burglary call that brought the police officer to the area; however, his family members say they can't believe he would have been.

"My son has no criminal record. He's never been to jail. He's a good kid," Phelps said. "No, no, no."

Fox 9 News did check to see if Nelson had any criminal history, and he does not.

Police did clarify that the initial burglary call that preceded the shooting did not take place at a church, and they confirm the sergeant who shot Nelson was acting alone at the time and did not have a partner.

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