Former Minnesota Cop Who Killed Man During Traffic Stop To Face Manslaughter Charge

April 14, 2021Joshua Skovlund
Kimberly Potter

Kimberly Potter booking photo. Photo courtesy of Breaking911/Twitter. Composite image by Joshua Skovlund/Coffee or Die Magazine.

Agents from the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension this morning arrested Kimberly Potter, the Brooklyn Center Police Department officer who shot and killed Daunte Wright during a traffic stop Sunday afternoon. The Minnesota BCA said the Washington County Attorney’s Office plans to charge Potter with second-degree manslaughter. 

During the incident Sunday, Wright resisted arrest, jumped back in his car, and attempted to flee. While Potter and other officers attempted to detain Wright, Potter, a 26-year law enforcement veteran, drew her sidearm and yelled, “Taser, taser, taser,” before firing a single shot at Wright’s chest and mortally wounding him. 

At a press conference Monday, Brooklyn Center Police Chief Tim Gannon said, “It is my belief that the officer had the intention to deploy their Taser but instead shot Mr. Wright with a single bullet. This appears to me, from what I’ve viewed and the officer’s reaction and distress immediately after, that this was an accidental discharge that resulted in the tragic death of Mr. Wright.”

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner classified Wright’s death as a homicide. The killing, which occurred in the midst of the ongoing trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, ignited widespread protests and riots in the Minneapolis area.

Brooklyn Center Mayor Mike Elliott announced Tuesday that Gannon and Potter had resigned.

“We have received a resignation letter from Officer Kim Potter. And in addition to that, we have also received a letter of resignation from the police chief,” Elliott said at a news conference.

The Minnesota BCA and Washington County Attorney’s Office had not returned requests for further information at the time of publication. This is a changing situation and this article will be updated as responses come in.

Read Next: ‘Holy Shit! I Just Shot Him!’ — Police Accidental Discharge Kills 20-Year-Old, Sparks Protests Near Minneapolis

Joshua Skovlund
Joshua Skovlund

Joshua Skovlund is a former staff writer for Coffee or Die. He covered the 75th anniversary of D-Day in France, multinational military exercises in Germany, and civil unrest during the 2020 riots in Minneapolis. Born and raised in small-town South Dakota, he grew up playing football and soccer before serving as a forward observer in the US Army. After leaving the service, he worked as a personal trainer while earning his paramedic license. After five years as in paramedicine, he transitioned to a career in multimedia journalism. Joshua is married with two children.

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