BROOKLYN CENTER, Minn. (WCCO) — In a place that has seen turmoil erupt in the late hours of the night, a sense of peace shined across the area surrounding the Brooklyn Center Police Department Thursday evening.
That same calmness is what Damik Wright carried with him, just hours after burying his brother, Daunte.READ MORE: Brooklyn Center Passes Sweeping Public Safety Resolution To Reform Policing
“It’s been a lot of cold, snowy rough days you know, and the day my brother gets put to rest it’s nice outside. It’s beautiful,” Damik said.
He described laying his brother to rest as the hardest part of the past week and a half. From this point forward, his focus is solely on justice.
“Now we got to put our boots down and stay firm in the mud and go all the way,” he said, adding that the guilty verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial earlier in the week gives him some reassurance.
Several miles east in Stillwater, a group held a vigil for Daunte Wright outside the home of the Washington County prosecutor. Critics feel the manslaughter charge he field against the officer who killed Daunte isn’t enough.READ MORE: Brooklyn Center, Where Daunte Wright Shot, To Vote On Policing Changes
“We want murder charges, we want you to appoint a special prosecutor and if you can’t do the job, find somebody who can,” a person said over the loudspeaker system outside the prosecutor’s home. “We’re pissed off and we want justice. Justice for Daunte Wright.”
The crowd on the neighborhood street was larger than the presence outside the police station Thursday. A protest was scheduled to start at 5 p.m., but there were more people connected to nonprofits, peace-keeping groups, and media than protesters around 7 p.m. Crowd numbers, however, don’t matter to Damik.
“I wouldn’t care if it was a million people out here or 500 people. It’s gonna be somebody out here at all times,” he said.
Nearby, Mayor Mike Elliott and the new city manager, Reggie Edwards, set up a spot to listen to the community. They sat in chairs with two more chairs across them for people to sit.
People felt it was a noble effort, but one that won’t keep Damik from his daily mission. He said he’s been outside the police department every day since his brother’s death.MORE NEWS: After Daunte Wright Killing, Brooklyn Center Stands In Middle Of Police Reform Debate
“As long as our voices is being heard and as long as they know we’re out here. We’re gonna continue to stay out here,” said Damik.