Gov. Tim Walz announced he’s preparing the Minnesota National Guard to provide public-safety assistance if necessary during the trial of former Brooklyn Center police officer Kim Potter.
The mobilization to readiness follows a request made by the Brooklyn Center and Hennepin County.
“Out of an abundance of caution, we are prepared to ask members of the Minnesota National Guard to be available to support local law enforcement with the mission of allowing for peaceful demonstrations, keeping the peace, and ensuring public safety,” Walz said in a statement.
The Brooklyn Center police officer responsible for shooting 20-year-old Daunte Wright was identified Monday evening as agitators surrounded the local police station for a second straight night.
According to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, officer Kim Potter, a 26-year veteran of the force, fired the fatal shot in Sunday’s incident. She is currently on administrative leave and a decision regarding her future with the Brooklyn Center Police Department is expected Tuesday.
Potter mistakenly drew her handgun instead of her Taser when Wright resisted arrest, according to partial body camera video released Monday.
Gov. Tim Walz activated the Minnesota National Guard on Thursday to assist local law enforcement in protecting the greater Twin Cities.
“In light of developments in the George Floyd case, we’ve taken the precautionary step of asking the Minnesota National Guard to prepare to help ensure safety for Minnesotans,” Walz said in a statement. “I want to remind Minnesotans that today’s ruling marks a positive step in the path toward justice for George Floyd.”
A class-action lawsuit was filed this week against the leaders of the Minneapolis Police Department, the Minnesota State Patrol, and the Minnesota Department of Public Safety for their “attacks” on journalists during last week’s riots.
“The press is under assault in our City. Over the past week, the Minneapolis Police and the Minnesota State Patrol have tear-gassed, pepper-sprayed, shot in the face with rubber bullets, arrested without cause, and threatened journalists at gunpoint, all after these journalists identified themselves and were otherwise clearly engaged in their reporting duties,” states the lawsuit.