The trial of former Minnesota cop who shot and killed Daunte Wright began Tuesday (November 30) with jury selection.
Former Brooklyn Center police officer Kim Potter faces first and second-degree manslaughter charges after she fatally shot the 20-year-old during a traffic stop on April 11 –– just miles away from the court proceedings for the trial of Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd.
Graphic body camera footage captured the fatal encounter in which Potter can be heard yelling, “Taser!” before she fired on Wright. Reports at the time indicated Potter was training another officer and had pulled the vehicle Daunte was driving over for expired tags.
Potter had been on the Brooklyn Center police force for 26 years and resigned two days after the shooting. The former police chief, Tim Gannon, also resigned.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison is prosecuting the case. According to USA Today, Potter is being represented by Earl Gray and Paul Engh. Gray is also the attorney for one of the other officers charged in Floyd’s murder and previously represented the cop who killed Philando Castile during a 2016 traffic stop.
Wright’s family members gathered with other families who’d lost loved ones to Minnesota police Monday night (November 29) ahead of the court proceedings. Wright’s mother, Katie Wright, thanked supporters for their support since “one of the worse days” of her life.
Jeff Storms, one of the attorneys representing the family, also spoke, stating that the shooting of Daunte Wright was “not some mere accident.”
“Are we prepared to hold a white officer accountable for killing a young Black man when she says it was an accident?” Storms said.
Opening statements are scheduled to begin December 8 and will be livestreamed.
Reading about Black trauma can have an impact on your mental health. If you or someone you know need immediate mental health help, text “STRENGTH” to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 to be connected to a certified crisis counselor. These additional resources are also available:
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255
The National Alliance on Mental Illness 1-800-950-6264
The Association of Black Psychologists 1-301-449-3082
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America 1-240-485-1001
For more mental health resources, click HERE.