MINNEAPOLIS — Three weeks before he was killed by Brooklyn Center Police, a new lawsuit alleges Daunte Wright participated in the carjacking and shooting of a 20-year-old black man on North Washington Avenue in Minneapolis.
The victim, Joshua Hodges, survived the gunshot wound to his leg but spent two weeks in the hospital and continues to suffer pain and permanent injuries, according to his attorney Mike Padden.
"Hit an artery, bled horribly. Could have died," Padden said.
Padden is the same attorney representing the family of Caleb Livingston – who filed a different lawsuit against the estate of Daunte Wright last month alleging Wright shot him in the head, leaving him permanently brain damaged.
Livingston's mom says her son and Wright used to be good friends but had a falling out, leading to the shooting.
In the new case, Hodges says he went to middle school with Wright and recognized him before Wright's accomplice allegedly shot him and Wright drove away with Hodges' car.
Even if the city of Brooklyn Center awards Daunte Wright's family a hefty settlement in his death at the hands of police, Padden said that money is not accessible to the plaintiffs suing Wright's estate.
What can the plaintiffs get from the suit?
"We don't know. We'll figure that out. We'll see how it plays out," Padden said. "But look, someone needs to answer for this. This kid was badly injured in a terrible crime, and it's perfectly reasonable to issue a claim against one of the two individuals responsible."
Wright was never charged in either of these cases. They are still open and under investigation by the Minneapolis Police Department, and they will not confirm whether Wright was a suspect.
KARE 11 received the following response from the Wright family's legal team, comprised of attorneys Ben Crump, Antonio Romanucci and Jeff Storms:
"Already grieving the loss of their loved one, is Daunte Wright’s family also expected to endure this character assassination on top of it? The audacity of this attorney is disappointing, and we implore members of the community to not be drawn in by these opportunistic efforts to tear down Daunte and hurt his family. Ploys like these aim to do one thing: distract. But our team will not be distracted in our fight for justice in this case and in our fight for justice for all marginalized communities."