Rockford, Illinois News

Former Minnesota cop charged with manslaughter in death of Daunte Wright

BROOKLYN CENTER, Minn. — The former police officer who shot a 20-year-old motorist last weekend has been charged with second-degree manslaughter.

Kim Potter, 48, was booked into the Hennepin County Jail Wednesday. She’s being held without bond, charged with killing Daunte Wright Sunday, April 11, during a traffic stop. It is believed she mistook her service weapon for a Taser.

In a body-camera video released Monday, Potter warns Wright that she is about to deploy her Taser, however, the clip clearly shows her holding a handgun. After she fires, the officer can be heard saying, “Sh-t, I just shot him.”

Initially pulled over because of an expired registration, Wright was ordered to exit the vehicle and place his hands behind his back after officers learned he had an outstanding warrant. As an officer attempted to cuff him, Wright pulled away and returned to his car. That’s when Potter yelled, “I’ll Tase you! I’ll Tase you! Taser! Taser! Taser!” She then fired a single shot as the vehicle pulled away.

Wright drove about 500 feet before collapsing and colliding with another car. He was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. Wright’s girlfriend was a passenger in the vehicle and suffered minor injuries.

Potter, a 26-year veteran, was placed on administrative leave after the shooting and resigned from the Brooklyn Center Police Department Tuesday.

In her one-paragraph letter of resignation, Potter said, “I have loved every minute of being a police officer and serving this community to the best of my ability, but I believe it is in the best interest of the community, the department, and my fellow officers if I resign immediately.”

Potter faces 10 years in prison if convicted.