MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — An associate minister is behind bars, accused of shooting a North High School staff member.
Kristopher Miller was found shot to death in the 1100 block of Irving Avenue North around 1 a.m. Wednesday.
Hours later police questioned and arrested Derrick Trevor Griffin.
“Kris is probably the closest person to me,” said Brandon Commodore.
Commodore said he and Miller have been best friends since they were 10 years old.
“We actually used to do, this is exactly what we would do every day in the summertime. We would sit right here, talk mess with people driving past,” Commodore said.
He said Miller had a big heart and was always willing to help others.
A proud North High graduate, Miller returned to his alma mater to work as an associate educator.
Principal Peter Christensen said Miller was committed to the success of each and every student he came into contact with.
“Every morning, he and I would stand at the front door greeting students and for Kris, it was fist pumps and handshakes and hugs from the kids every morning,” Christensen said.
Family and friends say Miller was a peaceful guy, who loved his two daughters and cherished his friends.
“He meant a lot to everybody. Like, he was the kind of person you could depend on no matter what you needed,” said Commodore.
His best friend believes it was his dependability, his helping someone out in their time of need that led to his death.
“He was just being a good dude at the time. It was misread and misinterpreted and here we are,” Commodore said.
Christiansen said it is difficult to measure just how big of a loss this is to the school, and community.
“A lot of the teachers had him in class. Me being here just a short time, and knowing how I feel, you magnify that by 10 for the kids, or 20 for some of the staff, and I can’t begin to put a measurement on how big a loss this is going to be for our school,” Christiansen said.
Christiansen said North has seen its share of pain, and will get through this tragedy. The Minneapolis Crisis team was brought in to help those struggling to cope with the news.
Griffin, a minister at a north side church, is now in the Hennepin County Jail.
Police are still trying to figure out what led to the shooting.
If you have any information that could help, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-692-TIPS or 800-692-8477.
WCCO’s Susie Jones Interviews Principal Peter Christiansen