Ex-Cop Who Killed Daunte Wright to Be Charged

The white police officer who officials say mistakenly shot and killed 20-year-old unarmed Black man Daunte Wright will be charged with second-degree manslaughter.

In an email sent to The New York Times on Wednesday, Washington County prosecutor Pete Orput says a complaint against Kim Potter, a 26-year veteran of the Brooklyn Center Police Department, would be filed later today.

The newspaper says Potter’s lawyer, Earl Gray, did not respond to a request for comment.

On Sunday, police initially pulled Wright over for having an expired registration tag on his car, but later determined that he had an outstanding gross misdemeanor warrant.

As seen in officer-worn body camera footage, Wright, standing by the open driver's-side door, wrestles free of his handcuffs as they are being applied. Wright then jumps back into his car and appears to try to drive off.

Now-former Brooklyn Center Police Chief Tim Gannon says Potter “had the intention to deploy their taser but instead shot Mr. Wright with a single bullet.” The vehicle then traveled several blocks before crashing into another car. Wright died at the scene.

According to the Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office, which classified his death as a homicide, Wright died of a gunshot wound to the chest.

Following the incident, Potter was placed on administrative leave, but had resigned — along with Gannon — by Tuesday.

The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension says Potter was arrested and taken into custody on Wednesday morning and will be booked into the Hennepin County Jail.

In a statement, Ben Crump, the attorney representing the Wright family, said, “While we appreciate that the district attorney is pursuing justice for Daunte, no conviction can give the Wright family their loved one back. This was no accident. This was an intentional, deliberate, and unlawful use of force.”

In Minnesota, the maximum punishment for a second-degree manslaughter conviction is 10 years in prison.


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