The former Minneapolis police officer accused of fatally shooting Daunte Wright, a Black motorist, after she confused her handgun for her Taser during a traffic stop in April, will testify at her trial.
Her attorney, Paul Engh disclosed the decision to have Kim Potter take the stand after a potential juror wrote in her questionnaire that she didn’t fully understand how the fatal encounter came about.
“Let me tell you, that if you’re selected, Officer Potter will testify and tell you what she remembered what happened,” Engh said.
“So you will know, not just from the video, but from the officers at the scene and Officer Potter herself what was occurring. I think it should quite interesting in hearing what she has to say.”
Her attorney revealed this on Tuesday November 30, as jury selection got underway.
Potter, a 26-year veteran of the Brooklyn Center Police Department, was charged with first- and second-degree manslaughter in the death of Wright.
The Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s Office said Wright, 20, died of a gunshot wound to the chest.
According to the complaint against Potter, Wright was initially stopped on the afternoon of April 11 for an air freshener hanging from his rearview mirror and the car’s expired license plate tabs. Officers then learned Wright also had an arrest warrant for a weapons violation.
The same voice could be heard later saying, “Holy s— I just shot him,” as Wright attempted to drive away, police said.
Then-Brooklyn Center Police Chief Tim Gannon said that he believed Potter meant to draw her Taser, but instead grabbed her service weapon.
Potter, who is white, has said she made an innocent mistake when she shot Wright. Both she and Gannon resigned in the wake of the shooting.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison announced in May that his office would lead the prosecution against Potter. His office also oversaw the prosecution that led to a murder conviction of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin in the killing of George Floyd.
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