Minnesota police erected concrete barriers around Brooklyn Center police officer Kim Potter’s home Tuesday night and neighbors were sent scrambling after demonstrators, who gathered to protest the shooting death of Daunte Wright threatened violence.
“Police guarded the property of Officer Kimberly Potter as Daunte Wright protests turned violent Tuesday night, with demonstrators clashing with police in Minneapolis while Portland’s police union building was set on fire,” the Daily Mail reported early Wednesday.
“On Tuesday afternoon, workers were erecting metal fencing in front of Ms. Potter’s home in Champlin, a town a few miles away from Brooklyn Center,” The Wall Street Journal added. “She lives in a planned community dotted with large multilevel houses with green curated lawns. Paper ‘No parking’ signs lined the street near her residence. A Champlin police officer in front of the house said Ms. Potter wasn’t home and referred questions to the Brooklyn Center Police Department. Ms. Potter didn’t respond to calls and texts requesting comment.”
Potter’s address leaked online Tuesday afternoon, and the home could be seen covered in plywood even before either police or protesters appeared. Neighbors, who spoke to The Wall Street Journal, say they feared the demonstrations, which began just before a declared curfew went into effect, would turn violent.
“We’re stressed, we’re nervous. I’ve been told some of the neighbors have left,” one neighbor told the outlet. “It was a horrible situation. We also feel bad for Mr. Wright’s family.”
Potter has not appeared in public but resigned on Tuesday. Brooklyn Center police officials said, in a press conference on Monday, that they believe the shooting that left Wright dead was accidental, and that Potter was reaching for her taser when she grabbed her service weapon instead. On bodycam footage released of the incident, Potter can be heard warning Wright about a taser, and yelling, “Oh, sh**!” once she realized she’d discharged her gun.
The Washington County Attorney’s Office said Tuesday that is reviewing the case. Potter may face charges, though the prosecutor’s office told media Tuesday that they are currently focused on handling the case of Derek Chauvin, the Minneapolis police officer accused of killing George Floyd.
Demonstrations against police turned violent in nearby Minneapolis, Minnesota, and in other areas of the country and, the Daily Mail reports, 60 people were arrested nationwide in a series of incidents. In Portland, Oregon, “anti-fascist” protesters who have been demonstrating against police continually since last May, set a government building on fire.
In Brooklyn Center, officers from several jurisdictions, including the Minnesota National Guard, stood watch over protests that quickly spun out of control.
“On Tuesday evening, about three dozen National Guard troops lined up alongside police officers behind a fence outside the Brooklyn Center Police Department, the site of protests since Sunday,” WSJ reported. “Many of the troops and officers had face shields. Some were stationed on the roof of the building.”
Police declared the protest a “riot” around 8 pm and moved to disperse demonstrators.
“Some people threw water bottles at the police. About 100 feet away, a group of protesters knelt with their hands in the air,” the WSJ added. “Just before 9 p.m., hundreds of armed local police, National Guard, and state troopers pushed protesters away from the area using armored vehicles, flashbangs, and chemical irritants.”
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