Medical examiner: Daunte Wright died of gunshot wound to the chest; manner of death homicide

The 20-year-old was killed by a police officer on Sunday, April 11.
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Daunte Wright died of a gunshot wound to the chest and his death has been ruled a homicide by the Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office. 

Wright, 20, was pronounced dead at 2:17 p.m. Sunday near 63rd Ave. N. and Kathrene Drive in Brooklyn Center, according to the medical examiner's report. He was shot in the chest by a Brooklyn Center police officer who was one of at least three officers involved in a traffic stop. 

Body-camera video released Monday by the police department shows an officer ask Wright to get out of the car for an outstanding warrant, then ask him to put his hands behind his back. As the officer is in the process of cuffing Wright, the 20-year-old pulls away and gets into the driver's seat of his car. 

At that point, a struggle ensued and after initially shouting "Taser! Taser!" an officer fired her gun, fatally striking Wright. No weapons were found in Wright's possession or the vehicle, police said. 

Police Chief Tim Gannon suggested that the officer, whom he described a veteran on the police force, accidentally grabbed her gun instead of her Taser, then shot. Gannon believes the shooting was an "accidental discharge." 

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The medical examiner's report was emailed to Minnesota media at 5:51 p.m. Monday. The report explains that a medical examiner's ruling for a manner of death is not a legal determination, nor does it express intent. 

Instead, the examiner's manner of death determination is a "statutory function of the medical examiner, as part of death certification for purposes of vital statistics and public health." 

More than 1,000 National Guard soldiers are now patrolling the Twin Cities to protect life and property following a night of unrest and looting in Brooklyn Center and other communities. 

Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey and Anoka counties are all under a curfew from 7 p.m. Monday until 6 a.m. Tuesday. 

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