Daunte Wright's criminal history: Minnesota man, 20, had outstanding arrest warrant, flaunted cash, weed and gun

'His FB is filled w/him flashing gang signs, using drugs & showing off cash,' journalist Andy Ngo wrote about Daunte Wright on Twitter

                            Daunte Wright's criminal history: Minnesota man, 20, had outstanding arrest warrant, flaunted cash, weed and gun
Daunte Wright (Facebook / Twitter / Andy Ngo)

Memories of the brutal death of George Floyd after former police officer Derek Chauvin kneeled down on his neck are still fresh in mind. Sadly, Black Lives Matter protests have triggered once again a year later across Minnesota after 20-year-old Black man Daunte Wright was shot by a police officer on April 11, 2021, near Brooklyn Center.

Police officer Kimberly Potter — a 25-year veteran in the force — has been identified as the cop who "accidentally" shot Wright while trying to tase him. In the bodycam footage, she can be heard warning Wright about tasing him, before discharging her firearm. She then exclaimed, "Holy s**t, I just shot him." Wright reportedly tried to drive away after being shot and soon crashed into another vehicle before hitting a cement barrier. He was later pronounced dead at the scene.


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Family members of Wright insist that he was pulled over by the cop for having an air freshener hanging from the rearview mirror, which violates the road safety laws in Minnesota. As the news triggers massive unrest and protest, Wright's past and his legal issues have also surfaced along with a warrant against his name.


Daunte Wright's past crimes

Wright, the father of a two-year-old, was reportedly driving with his girlfriend around 2 pm on April 11 when he was pulled over for traffic rules violation. He was driving his mother's car, which had an air freshener hanging from the rearview mirror. A Minnesota law prohibits the hanging of objects like rosary, air freshener, fuzzy dice etc from the rearview mirror as it can block the driver's view, according to Crookston Times. 

Upon stopping Wright, the police spotted that the registration tag of his car had expired. As the officers ran his name through the database, it was discovered that he had an outstanding arrest warrant against him, according to a Reuters report. 

According to The New York Times, the warrant against Wright was because he failed to turn up for his court appearance via Zoom call. He had a court hearing on two misdemeanor charges — one was for illegal possession of a Ruger .45 pistol without a permit and another was for fleeing police officers last summer. 


The police officers who stopped his vehicle then tried to arrest him but he re-entered the vehicle after a tussle. Later, in a press release, the police stated, "Officers determined that the driver of the vehicle had an outstanding warrant. Court documents show Wright had a warrant for missing a Zoom court hearing in a misdemeanor case. 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."

Journalist Andy Ngo posted several pictures of Wright on Twitter and said: "His FB is filled w/him flashing gang signs, using drugs & showing off cash," said Ngo. Wright had multiple Facebook profiles where he regularly shared snippets from his daily life. In one of his old profiles, he could be seen in a photo — smoking — what appears to be a joint. The photo is accompanied by the caption 'feeling woody'.

In some other photos, Wright can be seen showing off cash, or even brandishing a firearm. 



"Update: #DaunteWright was in the process of getting arrested by @BPPD for a weapons charge & escaping police before he was killed yesterday, sparking #BLM race rioting & looting. The criminal complaint says he had an illegal Ruger .45 pistol. He skipped his court date this month," Andy Ngo shared on Twitter, along with a copy of Wright's court summoning. 

"The claim from #DuanteWright's mother & #BLM activists that he was killed by police over air fresheners is unsubstantiated. There was a warrant for his arrest. He resisted arrest & got back in the vehicle & tried to speed off. He nearly killed others during the failed escape," he added in the thread.



‘And ... therefore his death is justified?’

Twitter users expressed displeasure at Andy Ngo's tweets as some interpreted his reports as a way to justify his shooting. "Absolutely none of this matters. All that matters is whether or not he presented a threat to the police officers that warranted their use of deadly force against him. Period," a user responded.

"And.....therefore his death is justified?" one user asked. Another shared a photo of himself with cash and said, "According to Andy, it’s ok if the police shoot me now too!"

"Andy, here is the complaint that he was originally served a summons to court for. The police NEVER saw him in possession of a gun, and the car they found it in wasn't his. Being killed for not showing up to court isn't a thing. ALSO the BC chief says they meant to use a taser," a user wrote, sharing a copy of what is believed to be Wright's complaint.





As protests continue to stir Minnesota, Daunte Wright's family has set up a GoFundMe page for his funeral as well as for future care of his son Daunte Jr. The fundraiser has surpassed its initial goal of $15,000 and raised $233,878 till now. 

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