The son of former Minnesota state Rep. John Thompson, a Black Lives Matter activist who was expelled by his own party, was arrested Monday in connection with a deadly hit-and-run crash that killed five people last week, three years after he was convicted in another tragic hit-and-run.
Derrick John Thompson, 27, of Brooklyn Park, was arrested and booked into the Hennepin County Jail on two charges of murder Monday, according to local reports.
Derrick is the son of John Thompson, who was expelled from the Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party caucus in September 2021 after allegedly falsely accusing a police officer of racial profiling and after his past legal troubles, including allegations of domestic assault, became public.
The elder Thompson made headlines during the George Floyd protests in 2020, when he and Black Lives Matter protesters descended on the home of police union leader Bob Kroll in Hugo, Minnesota.
The guy yelling and cursing at neighborhood children and neighbors of police union leader Bob Kroll is John Thompson, a Dem candidate for the MN House of Representatives.
He has been endorsed by Rep. Ilhan Omar, MN Gov. Tim Walz, and MN AG Keith Ellison.pic.twitter.com/A1IcVAguzX
— Cameron Cawthorne (@Cam_Cawthorne) August 16, 2020
Thompson was running for the state legislature at the time and went on to win his election that November after being endorsed by Rep. Ilhan Omar, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz and Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison. He was unseated in the November 2022 election.
On Friday, a speeding vehicle ran a red light and collided with a vehicle carrying five Somali women, all under 20 years old, Minneapolis police said. All five victims, who were reportedly members of the Dar Al Farooq Islamic Center, were killed, and the suspect was being treated for his injuries over the weekend, according to local media.
Now-viral surveillance footage of the crash showed the speeding SUV slamming into the other vehicle’s driver’s side. Minneapolis Police Chief Brian O’Hara said his department is investigating the video’s unauthorized release, the Star Tribune reported.
Derrick Thompson is awaiting charges that could be filed as soon as Tuesday, the Star Tribune reported.
Derrick has a long history of driving and drug-related offenses. In 2020, he was sentenced to eight years for a 2018 hit-and-run while fleeing police in Montecito, California. Officers found 17.6 pounds of marijuana and more than $20,000 in cash in the vehicle Derrick was driving, the Santa Barbara District Attorney’s Office said. The woman he struck spent several weeks in a coma after the crash and suffered life-altering injuries, the office said.
“This case was a series of dangerous criminal choices that resulted in a horrendous conclusion,” District Attorney Joyce Dudley said at the time. “The victim has made a miraculous recovery but will still live with the injuries inflicted by this defendant for the rest of her life.”
Derrick was sentenced to eight years in prison on Feb. 4, 2020, and he was given 502 days as credit for time already served and another 75 days credit for good behavior.
It’s not clear when Derrick was released from the California state prison system or why he was out of prison at the time of Friday’s crash in Minneapolis. His parole information is not public.
“This is certainly a terrible heart wrenching story and our hearts go out to the families of the five young women who lost their lives,” a representative for the Santa Barbara District Attorney’s Office told Fox News Digital.
“Mr. Thompson received 577 days credit (for the time he spent in custody pending disposition) at the time of sentencing,” the representative continued. “Based on the fact that he was sentenced to a violent felony statutorily the defendant would have been required to serve 85% of his time, meaning he would have had close to 5.5 years left to serve from the time of sentencing.
“However, CA proposition 57 (passed in 2016) changed potential credits calculations and gave CDCR wide latitude to award additional custody credits, as well as, early parole opportunities.”
The District Attorney’s Office has no information regarding when or why Mr. Thompson would have been released early.
In 2016, California voted on Proposition 57, which was designed to give nonviolent offenders an opportunity to be released early after earning good behavior credits. Critics, however, have said violent criminals are being released with no explanation.
Moreover, after the COVID-19 pandemic struck in 2020, California Democrat Gov. Gavin Newsom started releasing thousands of violent criminals early, including those doing time for murder in an attempt to reduce to virus’ spread within the prison system, according to a Los Angeles Times report.
In Minnesota, Derrick has faced dozens of arrests and been convicted at least six times. He was sentenced to a year in prison and two years probation for carrying a firearm without a permit in 2014. The next year, he was convicted of a drug-related felony and sentenced to more than a month in prison and five years probation.