On Thursday (December 23), a jury found the former Minnesota police officer, who shot and killed Wright during a traffic stop earlier this year, guilty of first- and second-degree manslaughter.
Judge Regina Chu ordered Potter to be held without bail until sentencing, something Potter’s attorneys argued against, stating the former cop “is not a danger to the public.”
Chu heard the arguments, but went ahead with keeping Potter in custody without bail until the sentencing hearing, which has been scheduled for February 18, 2022. Aggravating factors will be considered in the sentencing.
Both prosecutors and defense lawyers agreed the shooting was an accident. However, prosecutors, said Potter’s actions were criminally negligent.
Potter was captured on bodycam footage yelling “Taser!” However, instead of firing her taser, Potter fired her gun at the 20-year-old, who had been pulled over for expired tags and for having an air freshener hanging from his mirror.
Following the incident, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension identified Kim Potter as the officer who shot and killed Wright.
Reports at the time indicated Potter was training another officer and had pulled the vehicle Wright was driving over for expired tags and an “illegal” air freshener hanging from his rearview mirror.
Potter had been on the Brooklyn Center police force for 26 years and resigned two days after the shooting. The former police chief, Tim Gannon, also resigned.
Reverend Al Sharpton and the National Action Network (NAN) released a statement today in response to the indictment against Kim Potter for the murder of 20-year-old Daunte Wright:
“I am guardedly happy about the jury’s verdict in Brooklyn Center convicting former Officer Kim Potter for the killing of Daunte Wright. I’m glad she was held accountable for her actions but guarded because this unarmed young man is dead. I did the eulogy at his funeral and have remained in touch with his parents. We constantly prayed together throughout the trial. Even though the court didn’t further the wound the family is experiencing; it is still a sad Christmas for them because Daunte is not here.”
Reading about Black trauma can have an impact on your mental health. If you or someone you know need immediate mental health help, text “STRENGTH” to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 to be connected to a certified crisis counselor. These additional resources are also available:
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255
The National Alliance on Mental Illness 1-800-950-6264
The Association of Black Psychologists 1-301-449-3082
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America 1-240-485-1001
For more mental health resources, click HERE.