Jury finds former police officer Kim Potter guilty of manslaughter for shooting Daunte Wright

This Thursday, former Minnesota police officer Kim Potter was convicted of first- and second-degree manslaughter for fatally shooting 20-year-old black girl Daunte Wright when she mistook her official weapon for a Taser in April.

Potter did not react when Judge Regina Chu read out the guilty verdict in court.

The former policewoman has pleaded not guilty and insists the shooting was an accident, saying she mistakenly wielded the gun instead of her Taser stun gun.

In emotional testimony, she described how what was considered a regular traffic stop became “chaotic” in Downtown Brooklyn, a suburb of Minneapolis, Minnesota, in April.

“I remember shouting ‘Taser Taser Taser.’ And nothing happened, then he told me I shot him,” said Potter, bursting into tears.

On Sunday, April 11, 2021, a white female police officer on patrol with a colleague decided to search the driver of a white Buick who had committed a minor traffic violation.

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After realizing that the driver was the subject of an arrest warrant, the police officers decided to arrest him.

Wright, who was unarmed, resisted being handcuffed and restarted his car to try to flee. Potter then drew what she said she thought was her Taser.

On a camera footage of the scene, Potter can be heard shouting “Taser” several times, before shooting and seriously wounding Wright.

The incident occurred during the trial of white police officer Derek Chauvin, who suffocated George Floyd in Minneapolis in May 2020 by kneeling on his neck for about 9 minutes.

Floyd’s death has sparked nationwide protests against racism and police brutality.

Wright’s death also sparked several nights of protests and unrest in Downtown Brooklyn before Potter’s arrest eased tensions.

RELATED: How George Floyd’s murder sheds light on previously unseen stories

“Today’s ruling is an act of accountability for the actions of a police officer in a system that routinely brutalizes Blacks, Indigenous Peoples and People of Color,” Mirella Ceja-Orozco and Elizer Darris, Co-CEO of the Minnesota Freedom Foundation, said in the statement.

“At the same time, no amount of jail time, money or other punishments can bring Daunte Wright back to his family and loved ones. That’s why this ruling is. The jury is out on the gruesome loss of Mr. Wright, a young man. Black man living in Minnesota, to police brutality. We want to remember his life. and support his family during this trying time.We long for the day that shootings like this aren’t originally yet another example of police violence against Blacks and People Brown skin. “

With additional reporting via AFP Jury finds former police officer Kim Potter guilty of manslaughter for shooting Daunte Wright

Huynh Nguyen

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