FutureStarr

A Kimberly Potter

A Kimberly Potter

Kimberly Potter:

via GIPHY

"I wanted to show there were another women writers out there, who were able to make a successful career as writers and publishers. I was able to learn from them".

Potter

But what was seen in the 90 seconds of video released in April raised red flags, not just because of the confusion over the gun but for how the interaction unfolded before Potter drew her gun on Wright, who was the subject of an arrest warrant. The video suggested deficiencies in the training requirements and professional standards for officers in the department, with small failures cascading until Potter shot Wright.

The prosecutors and defence lawyers agreed that Potter mistakenly drew the wrong weapon and never meant to kill Wright. At issue was whether the jury would find her actions to be reckless in violation of the state’s manslaughter statutes, or chalk up the incident to a tragic mistake that did not warrant criminal liability. (Source: www.aljazeera.com)

Shot

But what was seen in the 90 seconds of video released in April raised red flags, not just because of the confusion over the gun but for how the interaction unfolded before Potter drew her gun on Wright, who was the subject of an arrest warrant. The video suggested deficiencies in the training requirements and professional standards for officers in the department, with small failures cascading until Potter shot Wright.

Ms. Potter, 49, was arrested in April, several days after she shot Mr. Wright, 20, during a traffic stop in a Minneapolis suburb after Mr. Wright broke free from another officer who was trying to handcuff him. As Mr. Wright got back into the driver’s seat of his car, Ms. Potter called out a warning, suggesting that she was using her Taser, and fired a single shot, killing Mr. Wright. (Source: www.nytimes.com)

Car

Ms. Potter had received extensive training on using Tasers during her many years as an officer, Ms. Eldridge said, including training on the risks of mixing up a Taser with a gun. Prosecutors also suggested that Ms. Potter was not justified in using her Taser in the circumstance — even if she had reached for it properly — because police policy in Brooklyn Center says officers should avoid using a Taser on people driving a car as it could injure the driver or other people on the road.

Forthman gave chase, and soon was joined by other police cruisers. The officers pursued Rickard’s vehicle into a parking lot. Once in the parking lot, two officers – Sergeant Vance Plumhoff and Officer Jimmy Evans – got out of their police vehicles and approached Rickard’s car. Officer Evans, with his gun in hand, pounded on the passenger-side window. (Source: www.natlawreview.com)

Day

Ms. Potter, 49, was arrested in April, several days after she shot Mr. Wright, 20, during a traffic stop in a Minneapolis suburb after Mr. Wright broke free from another officer who was trying to handcuff him. As Mr. Wright got back into the driver’s seat of his car, Ms. Potter called out a warning, suggesting that she was using her Taser, and fired a single shot, killing Mr. Wright.

Jurors deliberated 28 hours over four days — longer than in the trials of ex-Minneapolis police officers Derek Chauvin and Mohamed Noor. Both were convicted for unlawfully killing people while on duty. By contrast, a jury went five days before acquitting ex-St. Anthony police officer Jeronimo Yanez in 2017 in the killing of motorist Philando Castile. (Source: www.mprnews.org)

Killing

The killing of Mr. Wright, who was Black, by Ms. Potter, who is white, drew thousands of demonstrators to the Brooklyn Center Police Department for a week. At night, people threw water bottles, rocks and other items at a line of police officers stationed in front of the building; the police fired tear gas, foam bullets and other projectiles at demonstrators and arrested hundreds of people that week.

Ms. Potter, 49, was arrested in April, several days after she shot Mr. Wright, 20, during a traffic stop in a Minneapolis suburb after Mr. Wright broke free from another officer who was trying to handcuff him. As Mr. Wright got back into the driver’s seat of his car, Ms. Potter called out a warning, suggesting that she was using her Taser, and fired a single shot, killing Mr. Wright. (Source: www.nytimes.com)

Kill

To convict Ms. Potter of first-degree manslaughter, jurors would need to find that Ms. Potter had caused Mr. Wright’s death while recklessly handling her gun with “such force and violence” that it was “reasonably foreseeable” that someone would be killed or suffer great bodily harm.

During the course of the trial, the prosecution argued that Potter neglected training on use of her Taser and discharged her gun recklessly when she killed Wright. The defense argued that Wright resisted arrest, which contributed to a “slip and capture” error. Expert witnesses for the defense testified that Potter had the legal authority to fire either a gun or Taser. Potter testified in her defense, claiming that she mistook her gun for a Taser and admitting to fatally shooting Wright. She also said that she never observed Wright with a gun and that he was not being violent or making verbal threats during the arrest. (Source: en.wikipedia.org)

Stop

Media accounts of Wright’s shooting have focused on the fact that Potter accidentally pulled out her gun instead of her Taser during the traffic stop. This error, the argument goes, was the result negligence, and therefore Potter was appropriately charged with involuntary manslaughter – which, broadly defined, is a homicide caused by negligence.

Kimberly Potter, a white former officer in Brooklyn Center just north of Minneapolis, has pleaded not guilty to first- and second-degree manslaughter charges. Her lawyers have said Potter, 49, mistakenly discharged her handgun instead of her stun gun at Wright, 20, during a traffic stop. (Source: www.duluthnewstribune.com)

Death

Irrespective of the reasonableness of the shooting, the prosecution also will be hard-pressed to prove the second element of the manslaughter charge – that Potter “consciously took a chance of causing death or great bodily harm” to Wright. After all, the video strongly suggests that Potter intended to draw her stun gun, not her firearm. (Source: www.natlawreview.com)

 

Related Articles