A Minneapolis man has been arrested and charged with attempting to intimidate the judge presiding over the trial of former police officer Kim Potter, who killed Daunte Wright, after he staged a protest outside the door of her apartment.
Cortez Rice, 32, was arrested on November 29 in Wisconsin, and will be extradited back to Minnesota
Cortez Rice, 32, was arrested on November 29, and the charges unsealed on December 3.
He is charged with tampering with a judicial officer – a felony.
Rice on November 6 staged a protest outside what he believed to be the house of Judge Regina Chiu, who had initially ruled that cameras would not be allowed in her courtroom for Potter’s trial.
Rice live streamed himself inside the building, saying: ‘We on her heels.’
The video was posted on YouTube, and is now deleted – but copies are circulating online.
‘What she think. We want cameras. The people deserve to know,’ Rice says, inside the empty corridor.
Rice live streamed himself inside a Minneapolis condo building that he said was where Chu lived
He showed the hallways on the 12th floor, where he thought that she lived. It is unclear if she does live there
Rice went to the door, and said that he believed it was her home. He was encouraging his followers on the live stream to join him
Rice stood outside an apartment door and said: ‘I don’t know if this is her crib. I think this is her crib right here. We got confirmation that this is her house right here. Waiting for the gang to get up here’
Rice then stood outside an apartment door and said: ‘I don’t know if this is her crib. I think this is her crib right here. We got confirmation that this is her house right here.
‘Waiting for the gang to get up here.’
He was later heard saying on his livestream: ‘We are here for one person in particular.’
He yelled her name and said: ‘We demand transparency. We’d hate you to get kicked out of your apartment.’
Police interviewed Chu, who said she believed that the intention of Rice and the others ‘was to intimidate her and to interfere with the judicial process,’ the complaint read.
It was unclear whether Chu lived there.
A man who lives at the unit told The Minnesota Star Tribune that he purchased it from Chu and she no longer lives there.
However, in her order clearing the trial for broadcast, the judge said the protest was staged ‘at the presiding judge’s home.’
Judge Regina Chu is seen on December 2 during jury selection for the trial of Kim Potter
Kim Potter faces manslaughter charges in the fatal shooting of Daunte Wright, when she seemed to mistake her gun for her Taser
Rice, left, is a well-known community figure in Minneapolis, and is seen on March 7 at a protest over the killing of George Floyd on May 25, 2020
Cortez last month denied trying to scare the judge.
‘I don’t know why people are saying I was there to intimidate her or anything because that wasn’t the case,’ he told the paper.
‘I just made a live video on it and I was just there to make sure she can hear us.’
Rice had previously met Cortez, showing leniency on October 4 when he was before her in court for a probation violation stemming from a conviction in 2017 for illegal weapons possession.
At that hearing, she chose to continue his probation rather than send him to prison.
Potter, 49, shot and killed Wright, a 20-year-old father, in April during a traffic stop that took place during the Derek Chauvin trial.
She claims she reached for her gun thinking it was her taser, and denies manslaughter.
Wright was being sought on a warrant related to a weapons charge at the time of his killing, which took place 10 miles from where George Floyd was murdered in May 2020.