Former Brooklyn Center City Manager Curt Boganey was dismissed Monday after he publicly differed with Mayor Mike Elliott on whether the police officer who fatally shot a Black man in the Minneapolis suburb should be fired, saying the officer deserved “due process.”
Boganey was a longtime Brooklyn Center employee. He had served as city manager since 2003, according to a LinkedIn profile bearing his name and photo. He is a graduate of Oakland University in Michigan. However, the Star Tribune reported he had worked for the city since 2005.
As city manager, Boganey’s responsibilities included authority over personnel decisions related to Brooklyn Center’s police department. The role drew national scrutiny after the White police officer, later identified as Kim Potter, fatally shot 20-year-old Daunte Wright during a traffic stop.
Boganey reacted to his dismissal in a statement to Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”
“I lost my job. I still have my integrity,” Boganey said Tuesday.
The Brooklyn Center city council voted to remove Boganey within hours of a press conference in which he and Elliott discussed potential disciplinary action against Potter. Elliott spoke first and made clear that he felt Potter should be fired in response to the shooting.
“Let me be very clear – my position is that we cannot afford to make mistakes that lead to the loss of life of other people in our profession,” Elliott said. “I do fully support releasing the officer of her duties.”
Elliott then directed Boganey to address the situation. Before Boganey took the podium, Elliott noted that his role as city manager gave him authority to determine whether the officer would be removed.
Boganey, who is Black, noted that the officer would receive due process in the form of an investigation.
“All employees working for the city of Brooklyn Center are entitled to due process with respect to discipline,” Boganey said. “This employee will receive due process and that’s really all that I can say today.”
When asked if he personally felt the officer should be fired, Boganey reiterated his stance.
“If I were to answer that question, I’d be contradicting what I said a moment ago — which is to say that all employees are entitled to due process, and after that due process, discipline will be determined,” Boganey said. “If I were to say anything else, I would actually be contradicting the idea of due process.”
Press conference attendees pushed back on Boganey’s remarks. One speaker pointed out that Wright had not received due process prior to the fatal shooting.
Shortly after the press conference concluded, the Brooklyn Center city council voted at an emergency meeting to give Elliott command authority over the police department. The council also voted to remove Boganey from his post.
Reggie Edwards was named acting city manager. Councilmember Dan Ryan was the only member who voted against the measure.
Councilmember Kris Lawrence-Anderson said she voted to fire Boganey because she feared potential retaliation if she did not, according to the Star Tribune.
“He was doing a great job. I respect him dearly,” Lawrence-Anderson said during a virtual workshop. “I didn’t want repercussions at a personal level.”
Both Potter and Brooklyn Center Police Chief Tim Gannon have since resigned from their posts. Gannon stepped down one day after he said the shooting was considered an accidental discharge because the officer meant to fire her Taser, not her service weapon.
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