Georgia Fort reports:
The home of Washington County Attorney Pete Orput has been the site of multiple protests since he was selected to prosecute the Daunte Wright case. Activists gathered in the street, chanting “bring murder charges” and “do the right thing.”
Orput was given the case after the Hennepin County attorney said he had a conflict of interest. Although Orput has charged former Brooklyn Center officer Kim Potter with Second degree manslaughter, community leaders say it’s not enough. During one protest at Orput’s home he came outside to confront protestors, asking civil rights attorney Nekima Levy Armstrong if she wanted to try the case instead.
Armstrong led similar actions outside of Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman’s home last year after George Floyd was killed. The technique was successful in getting some of the protestors’ demands met.
“Gone are the days when people like Pete Orput can rest comfortably,” said Armstrong, “because he doesn’t know when we are going to pop up in front of his doorstep.”
Armstrong is calling for Orput to retire and for Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison to reassign the case to Jerry Blackwell.
On Sunday dozens gathered for a third demonstration at Pete Orput’s home, including several families who lost a loved one to police. This time the protest took the form of a church service, complete with gospel music and prayer.
“I pray that God touches Pete’s heart. I pray that God delivers him from hard-heartedness, from thinking that he is in control when he needs to understand that God is in control,” said Armstrong.
Although Orput did not come outside, his neighbors did, using racial slurs and other derogatory language. The Minnesota Department of Corrections has identified one of Orput’s neighbors as its employee – who is currently under investigation.