Police Chief Tim Gannon and Officer Kim Potter both resigned from their positions in the Minnesota city of Brooklyn Center after two consecutive nights of rioting and looting in response to the deadly shooting of 20-year-old Daunte Wright, Mayor Mike Elliott announced at a news conference Tuesday.
Gannon made the decision Monday to release body-camera footage showing the fatal encounter. A female officer can be heard yelling, “Taser, Taser, Taser,” before a single shot goes off. The police chief said at the news conference Tuesday believed the officer intended to grab her Taser, but reached for her handgun instead, categorizing the incident as an “accidental discharge.”
The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, which advised Gannon not to release the footage so soon, identified Potter as the officer who was involved by Monday evening. The city of Brooklyn Center saw a second consecutive night from Monday into early Tuesday of rioting and looting that spilled over into Minneapolis as the trial for Derek Chauvin continues for a third week.
Wright was fatally shot during a traffic stop conducted Sunday afternoon just 10 miles from where George Floyd was seen in viral bystander video pinned to the pavement by Chauvin’s knee on May 25, 2020. Floyd later died in custody. Tensions remain high in the region, and Operation Safety Net, the public security plan set in place for the trial, was heightened to Level 3.
On Tuesday, Mayor Elliot also used his press conference to call on Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz to move the case from Washington County to the jurisdiction of state Attorney General Keith Ellison. Elliott said the case was referred in Hennepin County, but that prosecutor’s office declined to take the case. It remains unclear whether Potter will face criminal charges in Wright’s death.
By Tuesday afternoon, just over 2,000 Minnesota National Guardsmen are on duty to assist local authorities “in maintaining peace, with more service members coming on duty over the next few days.”