BROOKLYN CENTER: A prosecutor said Wednesday that he will charge a white former suburban Minneapolis police officer with second-degree manslaughter for killing 20-year-old Black motorist Daunte Wright in a shooting that ignited days of unrest and clashes between protesters and police.
The charge against former Brooklyn Center police Officer Kim Potter will be filed Wednesday, three days after Wright was killed during a traffic stop and as the nearby murder trial progresses for the ex-officer charged with killing George Floyd last May, Washington County Attorney Pete Orput said.
The former Brooklyn Center police chief has said that Potter, a 26-year veteran and training officer, intended to use her Taser on Wright but fired her handgun instead. However, protesters and Wright’s family members say there’s no excuse for the shooting and it shows how the justice system is tilted against Blacks, noting Wright was stopped for expired car registration and ended up dead.
Intent isn’t a necessary component of second-degree manslaughter in Minnesota. The charge – which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison – can be applied in circumstances where a person is suspected of causing a death by “culpable negligence” that creates an unreasonable risk or consciously takes chances to cause the death of a person.
Asked how he arrived at the charging decision, Orput said: “I think it’ll be evident when you read the complaint,” which was not yet available.
Potter, 48, was arrested Wednesday morning at the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension in St. Paul. Her attorney did not immediately respond to messages from The Associated Press.
Potter and Police Chief Tim Gannon both resigned Tuesday.
The Star Tribune reported that concrete barricades and tall metal fencing had been set up around Potter’s home in Champlin, north of Brooklyn Center, with police cars guarding the driveway. After Floyd’s death last year, protesters demonstrated several times at the home of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis officer now on trial in Floyd’s death.
Police say Wright was pulled over for expired tags on Sunday, but they sought to arrest him after discovering he had an outstanding warrant. The

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