On Sunday night in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, 20-year-old Daunte Wright was shot and killed by officer Kimberly Potter during a traffic stop. On each of the following nights, protestors hit the streets to demand justice for Wright. On Tuesday, the city’s mayor Mike Elliott announced that Potter and police chief Tim Gannon have resigned.
“As of this morning, we have the resignation — we have received a resignation letter from officer Kim Potter,” he said during a news conference. “And in addition to that, we have also received a letter of resignation from the police chief.”
“We did not ask her to resign,” he continued. “That was a decision she made.” Elliott said Commander Tony Gruenig will serve as acting chief. However, Elliott did say that he has not yet accepted Potter’s resignation.
Potter as a 26-year veteran of the Brooklyn Center police force. Police chief Gannon said that the portion of body camera footage released on Monday led him to believe the shooting was accidental. In the video, Potter is heard warning Wright that she’s going to use her Taser on him before shooting him. Wright then drove several blocks before crashing into a cement barrier. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
“As I watched the video and listened to the officer’s commands, it is my belief that the officer had the intention to deploy their Taser, but instead shot Mr. Wright with a single bullet,” Gannon said. “This appears to me, from what I’ve viewed and the officer’s reaction and distress immediately after, that this was an accidental discharge that resulted in the tragic death of Mr. Wright.”
Potter was initially placed on administrative leave. Before his resignation, Gannon turned over the investigation to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.
Mike Elliott wasn’t the only one to hold a press conference on Tuesday. The families of Daunte Wright and George Floyd held a joint press conference.
During the press conference, Naisha Wright, the aunt of Wright, called for Potter to be brought to justice. She said:
“My nephew’s blood is on y’all hands. I’ve never seen my brother hurt like this before. Never. To hear my brother and to see my sister’s pain. Hold her accountable? Hold her higher than accountable. You train people on this stuff. Twenty-six years. Twenty-six years.”
Naisha, who was wearing a t-shirt with Floyd on it, also revealed a chilling connection to George Floyd. She revealed that one of Floyd’s girlfriends was once Daunte Wright’s teacher. She said:
“I wear this shirt and the craziest thing is to find out today that my family has connections to this man, to this family. His girlfriend was the teacher for my nephew.”
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