The family of Daunte Wright responded to the inequities in the criminal justice system one day after his killer, former Brooklyn Center cop Kim Potter, was charged with second-degree manslaughter for the deadly police shooting on Sunday.
Family attorney Ben Crump joined them during a press conference Thursday afternoon and lamented that Daunte’s mother Katie Wright now belongs to a sorority of women who have lost their Black sons at the hand of police. He said the family should receive some semblance of justice in court.
The family, which previously described Daunte’s death as a “driving while Black case,” concluded that there is no sufficient form of justice for them because they have to venture through life without their loved one. However, they urged for “accountability at the highest level.”
“Unfortunately there’s never going to be justice for us,” Wright’s mother said.
“Neither one of them, not Eric Garner, not Michael Brown, nor Stephon Clark got their day in court, they got no due process,” Crump added. In each case, the officers were either never brought to trial or acquitted.
“The blood of Stephon Clark, the blood of Eric Garner and the blood of Michael is on the hands of the American criminal justice system because there was no accountability for the police who killed them,” Crump said.
“Justice? What is justice? Do we get to see Dante smile?” his aunt Naisha Wright asked.
She also scoffed at the second-degree manslaughter charges against Potter, who would face up to 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine if found guilty.
“The highest accountability? I know the highest is going to be being judged by God. But can we get a conviction? Can we get something? Manslaughter!” she exclaimed while holding up side-by-side photos of a gun ands a Taser. Authorities claimed Potter confused her gun for a Taser during the shooting.
“Enough is enough that during the Derek Chauvin trial, regarding the killing of George Floyd, 10 miles from where this pivotal case of American jurisprudence is taking place…you would think that the police would try to do everything in their power to use the best standard of care,” Crump said.
Crump also referenced Mohamed Noor, a former Somali-American police officer in Minneapolis who was sentenced to almost 13 years in prison for the fatal shooting of a white woman while responding to her 911 call.
Noor was one of the first public cases in the current social justice climate which served as a barometer regarding how Black officers would be sentenced for the use of excessive force when the victim is white.
Crump pointed to numerous examples of white suspects who are allowed to walk away with their lives.
“It has deadly consequences for us and our children,” he said.
Daunte’s 14-year-old sister Destiny said she was “very disappointed” over the loss of her brother and will miss his smile and jovial nature.
Aubrey Wright, Daunte’s father, also spoke out, holding back unfathomable grief. “My son was a good son, he was a young man in the making,” he said. “We were building my son up to be somebody. He was a good kid.”
The family launched a GoFundMe page to help pay for Daunte’s funeral and legal costs.
“On April 11th, our 20-year-old son, Daunte Wright Sr., was fatally shot and killed by a Brooklyn Center police officer during a routine traffic stop,” the family states. “Our family is distraught as we struggle to understand why our loved one was taken away from us in such a senseless manner.”
“All funds raised through this site will go towards covering funeral and burial expenses, mental health and grief counseling for Daunte’s family, to help the Wright family in their fight for justice, and to provide support for Daunte’s infant son, Daunte Wright, Jr. 100% of the funds raised on this site will go to the Wright family. NO PART OF THESE FUNDS WILL BE USED TOWARDS LEGAL FEES.”
Crump announced Daunte’s funeral will be held next Thursday, April 22, at 12 p.m. local time, when the Rev. Al Sharpton will preside.