Sheriff says Brooklyn Center created 'significant confusion' for mutual aid response

Law enforcement spray protesters during the fourth night of unrest outside the Brooklyn Center Police Department following the police shooting of Daunte Wright. (FOX 9)

Hennepin County Sheriff David Hutchinson is calling out the City of Brooklyn Center for creating "significant confusion" regarding mutual aid response amid the ongoing unrest, according to a letter sent to the city's mayor Wednesday obtained by FOX 9.

There have been four nights of protests following the deadly police shooting of Daunte Wright. At times, the demonstrations have turned violent with protesters throwing objects at police and looting businesses.

Earlier this week, the Brooklyn Center City Council passed a resolution to ban the Brooklyn Center Police Department's use of certain crowd control tactics, such as tear gas and kettling. However other law enforcement agencies through mutual aid response have continued to use these methods during the protests.

On Tuesday, Brooklyn Center Mayor Mike Elliott issued a mayoral emergency proclamation, which Hutchinson says clarified that the city council's resolution does not apply to joint law enforcement operations.

"In fact, the Mayoral Emergency Proclamation expressly authorizes law enforcement – including Brooklyn Center police officers as well as those responding from other agencies – to use the minimal level of force that is reasonable, necessary, and appropriate to respond to the civil unrest," reads Hutchinson's letter in part.

During a press conference Wednesday, Elliot said he stood with the council's resolution and denounced the use of tear gas, calling it "not a humane way of policing." Hutchinson sent the letter via email after the mayor's press conference.

Hutchinson ended the letter asking Elliott to confirm if the city wants to continue requesting mutual aid from other agencies, including the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office.

Operation Safety Net, the law enforcement effort formed to respond to any unrest during the Derek Chauvin trial, did respond to a fourth night of protests Wednesday night at the Brooklyn Center Police Department.