In Minnesota it Seems Black Lives are Expendable – to the Police

minneapolis police

George Floyd was killed by Derek Chauvin over a phony twenty dollar bill. 

On Sunday April 11, 2021 as the Derek Chauvin trial trudges on, Daunte Wright, 20, barely a man, was shot by an officer from the Brooklyn Center Police Department, a city that borders Minneapolis. He was shot because of an air freshener hanging in his car. An air freshener! Those things that look like Christmas trees. I guess the Brooklyn Center PD didn’t get the memo that excessive force is not on the menu this year. Brooklyn Center erupted in protests and the police are out in riot gear. Not that the prosecution needs help convicting Derek Chauvin but this nail drills the coffin shut, I hope – what was that cop thinking?  

So what do we know so far?

Daunte Wright was driving his new car and was one his way to or from the carwash with his girlfriend. Just about 2pm local time he was pulled over by the police for a traffic violation: the air freshener hanging from his rear view mirror. It also came to the officers’ attention that he had an “outstanding warrant”. He called his mother from his cellphone as soon as he was pulled over to let her know what was happening. There was also a question about the car insurance which his mother said she would provide the officers with over the phone. But the police would not talk to his mother. I’m not clear at which point Wright got out of his car and then got back in his car. He was shot through his car yet managed to drive away despite his injuries. He then crashed into another vehicle. His girlfriend suffered non life threatening injuries and the occupants of the other vehicle were uninjured but Wright died. His mother was at the scene of the crash. Apparently the body cams were on. The protests have gotten “so bad” that “Brooklyn Center police declared the crowd an unlawful assembly and said anyone who remained at the scene — including journalists — would be arrested”.

Here is the police account:

“According to the police account, “officers determined that the driver of the vehicle had an outstanding warrant. At one point as officers were attempting to take the driver into custody, the driver re-entered the vehicle. One officer discharged their firearm, striking the driver. The vehicle traveled several blocks before striking another vehicle.”

Wright died at the scene. A female passenger in the car suffered non-life-threatening injuries when the vehicle crashed, police said.”

This is an unfolding story and will be followed and reported on as more information comes to light. 

If I had to guess – he drove off because he was scared shitless of the police and what they might do to a black man with an outstanding warrant. I guess they pulled him over in his new car  – if the car was brand new – because they saw a young black man in a new car and they used the air freshener as an excuse. And if the car was not brand new they used the air freshener to “F” with him anyway. If he was white the air freshener would have gone unnoticed. 

My heart goes out to the Wright family, friends, and community of Daunte Wright for yet another snuffing out of a life for no reason. May he rest in peace.

Author: Sherri Margolin (Dark Matters)

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