Harris: Daunte Wright ‘should be alive today’

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Vice President Harris spoke out Tuesday on the recent police killing of Daunte Wright, a 20-year-old Black man, saying the country needs to “fully address racial injustice.”

“He should be alive today,” Harris said while participating in a White House roundtable on Black maternal health. “Our nation needs justice and healing and law enforcement must be held to the highest standards of accountability.”

“We know that folks will keep dying if we don’t fully address racial injustice and inequities in our country from implicit bias to broken systems,” she added.

Wright was shot and killed at a traffic stop Sunday afternoon in Brooklyn Center, Minn., a suburb of Minneapolis and roughly 10 miles from where former police officer Derek Chauvin is standing trial for the May 2020 killing of George Floyd.

Body camera footage of the traffic stop has been released, and the Brooklyn Center police chief said at a press conference Monday that the officer, Kim Potter, accidentally used her handgun instead of her stun gun.

Potter resigned from the police force Tuesday.

Wright was initially pulled over for an expired license tag. Police attempted to take Wright into custody after an outstanding warrant for his arrest showed up in the system. The New York Times has reported that the warrant was for a missed court appearance earlier in the month.

While an officer attempted to handcuff Wright during the traffic stop, he twisted away and attempted to get back into his car. Potter can be heard warning that she was going to tase him, but instead shot Wright, fatally wounding him.

Wright drove a short distance before crashing. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Wright’s death comes almost a year after Floyd’s killing sparked nationwide Black Lives Matter protests calling for an end to police brutality and systemic racism. His death has inflamed tensions in the metropolitan area, as the Twin Cities were already bracing for potential fallout from a verdict in the Chauvin case, which will likely come next week.

Protests have centered around the Brooklyn Center Police Department for the past two nights, prompting the mobilization of the Minnesota National Guard.

Footage from the demonstrations has shown the firing of tear gas and rubber bullets in an attempt to drive back protesters.

President Biden addressed the killing of Wright from the Oval Office on Monday.

“The fact is that we do know that the anger, pain and trauma that exists in the Black community in that environment is real, it’s serious, and it’s consequential,” Biden told reporters. “But it will not justify violence and/or looting. So the question is, how we, in an orderly way, make clear that they get down to a full-blown investigation to determine what the facts are.”

Tags Daunte Wright Joe Biden Minnesota police shooting of Daunte Wright

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