A bail fund backed by Vice President Kamala Harris was responsible for assisting an alleged criminal back on the streets who is now accused of murder, according to Fox News.
The publication reported that George Howard, 48, was behind bars for alleged domestic abuse when the Minnesota Freedom Fund posted his $11,500 bond and allowed him to go free sometime around Aug 6.
Days later Howard can be seen on surveillance footage engaged in a road rage incident on Minneapolis Interstate 94 that ended with Luis Damian Martinez Ortiz, 38, receiving a gunshot wound to the chest. Ortiz was pronounced dead at the hospital, according to St. Paul’s KSTP-TV.
Howard is being charged with two counts of second-degree murder and the MFF is being called to account for the accused’s release. The group admitted on Friday that they were responsible for bailing Howard out, but later deleted the tweet.
Fox News reported that the tweet was preserved by the Internet Archive and can be viewed here.
“We are aware of reports of the tragic and fatal shooting in Minneapolis earlier this week allegedly involving George Howard, an individual the Minnesota Freedom Fund had previously provided with bail support,” the group wrote.
“MFF believes that every individual who has been arrested by the law enforcement is innocent until proven guilty, and if a judge deems them eligible for bail, they should not have to wait in jail simply because they don’t have the same income or access to resources as others.”
The group gave no indication that they would be reviewing the policies that lead to the release of Howard and the death of Ortiz, but did offer a followup tweet, seeming to indicate that changes had already been made since Howard’s Aug. 6 release:
“Under new leadership, MFF has implemented changes to its policies and procedures, and we will continue to assess them to ensure that we are being responsive to the safety and needs of our community,” the tweet stated.