The yearbook for a Minneapolis-area Catholic school makes the false claim that Amir Locke and Daunte Wright were murdered.
Included in the 2021-22 yearbook for students at Totino-Grace High School, located in the Minneapolis suburb of Fridley, is a page dedicated to four black individuals allegedly “murdered” at the hands of police officers: George Floyd in Minneapolis, Amir Locke in Minneapolis, Daunte Wright in Brooklyn Center, and Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Ky.
“Say their names,” the bottom of the page adds in large capital letters.
However, only one of those individuals — George Floyd — was determined to have been murdered. In April 2021, a jury found former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of second- and third-degree murder, as well as second-degree manslaughter, in the infamous May 2020 killing of Floyd that sparked nationwide protests, riots, and cultural and social upheaval.
Amir Locke was killed by police in February of this year during the execution of a no-knock warrant in which he was not a suspect, but Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison and Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman declined to prosecute the officer who shot him.
In the April 2021 killing of Daunte Wright, Totino-Grace graduate and former Brooklyn Center police officer Kim Potter was convicted of first- and second-degree manslaughter but was never charged with murder.
And in the March 2020 killing of Breonna Taylor by Louisville officers, which also happened during a no-knock warrant, one officer involved was acquitted on three counts of wanton endangerment, but the officer determined to have shot Taylor was never charged with a crime.
Alpha News spoke with a Totino-Grace graduate on the condition of anonymity about the erroneous claims in the school yearbook. She told us some families are choosing not to enroll their children at Totino-Grace next year because of it.
“What about the kid who has parents who are police officers, or grandparents who are retired members of law enforcement — how do they feel?” she said. “How are they represented in the yearbook?”
The backlash from multiple parents had evidently been strong, as school president Dr. Craig W. Junker wrote a letter to them saying administration doesn’t believe “some of the [yearbook’s] content” fully reflects the school’s values, which are “rooted in Catholic, Lasallian, and School Sisters of Notre Dame principles.”
“Creation of the yearbook is a student-led initiative that we see as a valuable learning and leadership opportunity for our students,” Junker said. “There is a process in place for yearbook approval. In this instance, it was not effective in identifying the potential for concern around the content in question. We have taken steps to avoid this situation in the future.”
At the end of his letter, Junker promised a refund for anyone dissatisfied with the yearbook.
The school directed Alpha News to its letter to parents when asked for comment.