Kim Potter Guilty Of Manslaughter For Killing Daunte Wright
Former Minnesota police officer Kim Potter was found guilty of first-degree manslaughter and second-degree manslaughter Thursday for killing Daunte Wright.
Potter shot and killed the 20-year-old after claiming she confused her gun for a Taser in April 2021 amid the Derek Chauvin trial. A few days later, Potter resigned from the police department.
Wright was stopped for having an air freshener in his rearview window in the same metro area where Chauvin killed George Floyd in May 2020.
As AP News reports, jurors saw video of the encounter, which show Wright pulling away while another officer attempted to handcuff him after they found he had an outstanding warrant for a weapons possession charge.
WATCH: ESSENCE reports: Kim Potter charged with 2nd degree manslaughter
Potter repeated that she would tase Wright before she drew her handgun and shot him in his chest. Expert testimony said that “even the use of a Taser would have been ‘unreasonable’ during the incident,” BBC reported.
Potter had been trained on Tasers since 2002, but had never fired it. She also never fired her pistol before shooting Wright, the outlet states.
As per AP:
For first-degree manslaughter, prosecutors had to prove that Potter caused Wright’s death while committing a misdemeanor — in this case, the “reckless handling or use of a firearm so as to endanger the safety of another with such force and violence that death or great bodily harm to any person was reasonably foreseeable.”
The second-degree manslaughter charge required prosecutors to prove that Potter caused Wright’s death “by her culpable negligence,” meaning she “caused an unreasonable risk and consciously took a chance of causing death or great bodily harm” to Wright while using or possessing a firearm.
The maximum prison sentence for 1st degree manslaughter is 15 years. As per Minnesota law, defendants are “only sentenced for their most serious conviction if multiple counts involve the same act and the same victim,” AP News reports.
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