The Dallas Morning News

Officials criticize police tactics

Leaders pass resolution to ban tear gas, more

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BROOKLYN CENTER, Minn. — Elected leaders in the Minneapoli­s suburb where a police officer fatally shot Daunte Wright want officers to scale back their tactics amid nightly protests, leaving some law enforcemen­t called in to assist asking whether the city still wants their help.

Hundreds of demonstrat­ors have gathered outside the heavily guarded Brooklyn Center

police station every night since former Officer Kim Potter, who is white, shot the 20year-old Black motorist during a traffic stop Sunday. Protesters have shouted profanitie­s, launched fireworks, shaken a security fence surroundin­g the building and lobbed water bottles at officers. Officers have driven away protesters with tear gas grenades, rubber bullets, flash-bang grenades and long lines of riot police.

People who live in the area say many of their neighbors are staying in hotels or with relatives to avoid the noise as well as the tear gas that seeps into their homes.

“We can’t just have our window open anymore without thinking about if there’s going to be some gas coming in,” said 16-year-old Xzavion Martin, adding that rubber bullets and other projectile­s have landed on his apartment’s second-story balcony. “There’s kids in this building that are really scared to come back.”

The tactics have not sat well with Brooklyn Center city officials, who passed a resolution Monday banning the city’s officers from using tear gas and other chemicals, chokeholds and police lines to arrest demonstrat­ors.

Mayor Mike Elliott, who is Black, said at a news conference Wednesday that “gassing is not a human way of policing” and he didn’t agree with police using pepper spray, tear gas and paintballs against demonstrat­ors. Elliott didn’t respond to multiple messages Friday.

But Brooklyn Center police aren’t dealing with protesters on their own. Other agencies, including the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Department and the Minnesota National

Guard, have provided support at the city’s request in a joint effort dubbed Operation Safety Net. The city’s resolution isn’t binding on those agencies.

Protests have continued since Potter was charged

Wednesday with second-degree manslaught­er. The former police chief in the majority nonwhite suburb said Potter fired her pistol when she meant to use her Taser. Both Potter and the chief resigned Tuesday.

 ?? John Minchillo/the Associated Press ?? Authoritie­s fired gas munitions on Tuesday at demonstrat­ors gathered outside the Brooklyn Center Police Department to protest the shooting death of Daunte Wright.
John Minchillo/the Associated Press Authoritie­s fired gas munitions on Tuesday at demonstrat­ors gathered outside the Brooklyn Center Police Department to protest the shooting death of Daunte Wright.

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