Who is Winston Smith? Minneapolis Black Man Fatally Shot by U.S. Marshals

The man shot dead by law enforcement in Minneapolis on Thursday has been identified as 32-year-old Winston Boogie Smith Jr., a family member has confirmed to Newsweek.

A U.S. Marshals Service statement, issued by a Hennepin County Sheriff's Department spokesperson, did not identify Smith, who is Black. Instead, the statement referred to him as a suspect and did not mention his race.

The statement said the suspect was wanted on a gun charge and was killed by members of a U.S. Marshals task force. The task force was attempting to arrest him on a state arrest warrant, according to the statement by a Hennepin County Sheriff's Department spokesman.

The statement said that the suspect was in a parked car at a parking garage at around 2.10 p.m. on Thursday, but "failed to comply and produced a handgun, resulting in task force members firing upon the subject." The statement also did not include the race of the suspect. Smith was declared dead at the scene, and a woman in the same car was injured by shattered glass.

The statement said the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is investigating the incident.

Law enforcement sources told FOX 9 the person who was shot was a murder suspect.

The suspect's arrest warrant was issued in Minnesota, Marshals Service spokeswoman Nikki Credic-Barrett told the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

The personnel involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave, the spokeswoman added.

According to his Instagram account, Smith made music, as well as did acting, comedy and "camera work." He made music under the moniker "Wince Me Boi."

Protests erupted in Minneapolis after Smith's shooting, which occurred just over a year after the killing of George Floyd, a Black man who was murdered by a white police officer in the same city.

Winston Boogie Smith in Minneapolis
A photo of Winston Boogie Smith. Smith was the man killed by law enforcement in Minneapolis on Thursday. Facebook

Demonstrators lit a dumpster on fire on Thursday night in the Minneapolis Uptown area, after the deadly shooting at the parking garage. The dumpster, at the intersection of Lake Street and Girard Avenue S., continued to burn and people added other items like garbage cans to keep the fire burning. Police returned to the area at around midnight to form a line and move the protesters.

The agencies who were part of the U.S. Marshals task force involved in the shooting were not disclosed, but did not include Minneapolis police, the department whose officers were involved in Floyd's death, the Star Tribune reported.

Smith is pictured on his Instagram account posing with Ben Crump, the high-profile civil rights attorney who represents the families of Floyd and Daunte Wright, who was fatally shot by a police officer in Brooklyn Center, a city on the northwest border of Minneapolis, on April 11.

Tributes poured in for Smith on his social media pages. On Facebook, Sammie B Rogers wrote: "This Is So Unreal My Mind Is Racing Like Crazy Lots Of Memories With You I Love You Winston Boogie Smith Rest Easy Man."

Joseph Gonzalez said: "Cops In Minneapolis Killed A Legend In The Makin Today. Big Representation For SouthSide Winston Boogie Smith We Ain't Know Each Other For Long But You Was A Tru [sic] Supporter Of Others. & Your Videos Definitely Made Me Smile."

Ty Henderson wrote on his Facebook page: "Anybody that knew Winston Boogie Smith knows how good of a person he was. How much of a positive soul he had... F*** the news and whatever the circumstances were."

Qzeuntin Watts called Smith "the heart and soul of Minneapolis."

"Literally still refuse to believe it. Straight up devastating loss for the entire community," Watts added.

Newsweek has contacted the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and the U.S. Marshals for comment. Newsweek has also contacted civil rights attorney Ben Crump for additional comment.