Student Death Deemed Murder

17-year-old charged with Minneapolis shooting

A 17-year-old has been charged with second degree murder in the death of Harvard student Clarence D. “Duane” Meat ’05-’07 Wednesday morning, according to the Minneapolis Police Department.

Detective Sergeant Mike Keefe, a member of the Minneapolis force’s homicide unit, said Friday that the suspect is believed to be a member of the Sureño 13 street gang.

The suspect was also charged with second degree assault and felony possession of a pistol, said Keefe, who declined to release the teen’s name because he is a minor.

Police do not believe that Meat himself had any involvement in gang activity, Keefe said.

The enmity between Meat and the Sureño 13 gang dates back to an incident several weeks ago, according to Keefe. Meat was walking along a South Minneapolis street when gang members emerged from a house and harassed the Harvard student, Keefe said.

Meat and three friends drove back to that street around 10 a.m. Wednesday with plans to spray “derogatory remarks” on the gang members’ house, according to Keefe. It was “more of a prank than anything,” the detective said.

Meat and one friend approached the house while the two others remained in a car, Keefe said. As the Harvard student spray-painted the house, a suspected gang member emerged from the home, chased Meat, and shot him, according to Keefe.

The friends then drove Meat to the Hennepin County Medical Center, Keefe said. The Harvard student died in the hospital’s emergency room at 10:22 a.m., according to the Hennepin County medical examiner’s office.

Meat’s three friends are cooperating with investigators, and none of the three will face vandalism charges, Keefe said.

Meat was on leave from Harvard this spring, but he planned to return to the College in the fall for the final semester of his senior year. He was a resident of Leverett House and a former president of Native Americans at Harvard College. Leverett residents learned of Meat’s death last Thursday evening in an e-mail from House Master Howard Georgi ’68.

—Staff writer Daniel J. Hemel can be reached at hemel@fas.harvard.edu.