May 6, 2021

Ukraine Breaking News

Ukraine Breaking News | The Latest News In Ukraine

Shooting at Daunte Wright: former officer Kim Potter has been accused

Shooting at Daunte Wright: former officer Kim Potter has been accused

Prosecutors in a suburban county of Minneapolis accused the former officer who shot 20-year-old Daunte Wright on Wednesday with manslaughter in second degree – a quick legal move that some have called excessively lenient after the death of another black man. police hand.

Officials from the Washington County Attorney’s Office announced the indictment against Kim Potter, who had resigned from the Brooklyn Center Police Department the previous day. The veteran officer was arrested and jailed, but was later released on $ 100,000 bail. The charge carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

Ten miles from where Potter shot Wright, former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin is on trial on charges of murder and manslaughter for the May 25 death of George Floyd, on whose neck he knelt to more than nine minutes.

Imran Ali, assistant chief of the Washington County Criminal Division and director of the main criminal unit, said in a statement on the Potter indictment: “Some occupations carry immense responsibility, and nothing more than a sworn police officer.” .

“With this responsibility comes a great deal of discretion and responsibility. We will pursue this case vigorously and intend to demonstrate that Agent Potter has abolished his responsibility to protect the public when he used his firearm rather than his taser, ”the statement said.

Protesters gather outside the Brooklyn Center Police Department on Wednesday.

(Jason Armond / Los Angeles Times)

Benjamin Crump, a civil rights attorney representing the family, said that “while we appreciate that the district attorney is pursuing justice for Daunte, no conviction can restore the loved one to the Wright family.”

“It wasn’t an accident. This was intentional, deliberate and illegal use of force, “Crump added.” Driving while Black continues to lead to a death sentence. “

Famous local civil rights attorney Nekima Levy Armstrong attacked the indictment filed against Potter, who was tasked with training other Brooklyn Center police officers.

“The fact that she was a 26-year veteran of the Brooklyn Center Police Department, the fact that she was a field training officer, means that she had a heightened sense of education and authority. And responsibility, which means she should have a greater sense of responsibility, “Armstrong said.” There is no point in accusing her of lower charges than the average person would face if she claimed to have mistakenly used a gun instead of a taser. “

Potter shot Wright, an unarmed black man, during a traffic stop on Sunday afternoon.

Police body camera footage showed officers attempting to arrest Wright on a pending warrant. Wright frees himself from the officers, jumps back into his car and drives off after the officer fires. What appears to be a woman’s voice yells “Taser, Taser, Taser” before a single gunshot is fired.

“This is a tragedy that has reopened wounds that cannot heal,” said Jamar B. Nelson, a member of the local group A Mothers Love Initiative, which works with the families of victims of gun violence.

Brooklyn Center Police Chief Tim Gannon, who resigned from the department on Tuesday, said Potter intended to use a Taser, not a firearm.

In the days following the shooting, protests covered much of the Twin Cities area. A curfew has been in place for several nights.

A man holds a sign that says Justice for Wright in front of a chain link fence with heavily armored police on the other side

On Wednesday, heavily armed law enforcement officers watched the protest outside the Brooklyn Center Police Department.

(Jason Armond / Los Angeles Times)

Brooklyn Center Mayor Mike Elliott has called for calm in the city.

“I share the anger, sadness and shock of our community, and my message to all who demand justice for him and his family is this: your voices have been heard,” Elliot said at a news conference. “The eyes of the world are watching the Brooklyn Center and I urge you to protest peacefully and without violence. We show the best of our community “.

The allegations were filed by the Washington County Attorney’s Office even though the Brooklyn Center is located in Hennepin County. That county’s attorney’s office referred the case to Washington County under a settlement used for cases involving police killings.

On Wednesday, a few hours after Potter’s arrest, a mix of excitement came from this community flanked by single-level houses and manicured lawns.

Prince Wehye, 35, was looking at a memorial for Wright, where a large wooden fist was surrounded by flowers, balloons, and LED candles. He was there alone, on the corner of 63rd Street North and Kathrene Drive, for nearly an hour.

“It’s about responsibility,” Wehye said when asked about the prosecution against Potter. “This is just a slap on the wrist. It’s like a formula, and I’m sick of it, really sick of it. “

During his lunch break from work, Lamark Taylor, 52, parked his car and walked over to the makeshift memorial. Wright’s shooting made him think of his children, who are 18 and 19 years old.

“Well, at least they’re accusing her,” Taylor said of Potter. “I am grateful for that. We will see later what happens. “

Across from the police department, Emily Johnson stood by the roadside holding a cardboard sign with the surnames of Jamar Clark, Philando Castile, George Floyd and Wright, along with the words “This is MN”. All four are black men who have been killed by police in the Twin Cities area in recent years.

“I’m pleasantly surprised that there have been allegations,” said Johnson, 33, a white woman who works as a social worker at a nearby school. “But yeah, I still feel like that’s not enough. These are just accusations. We are seeing this with the Chauvin trial: how much more damage will be caused? “

In downtown Minneapolis, former defense officer Chauvin filed his case for a second full day this week. This is the third week of testimony. The trial could go to the jurors early next week.

Eric Nelson, Chauvin’s defense attorney, argued that his client’s use of force was necessary and that Floyd’s drug use contributed to his death.

Nelson called Dr. David Fowler, a retired forensic pathologist. Fowler told jurors he believed Floyd had died due to a number of factors.

“In my opinion, Mr. Floyd had sudden cardiac arrhythmia or cardiac arrhythmia due to his atherosclerotic and hypertensive heart disease,” Fowler said.

Nelson also asked Judge Peter Cahill for an acquittal on Wednesday, arguing that the state had failed to present sufficient evidence that Chauvin’s use of force in restraining Floyd led to his death.

Cahill denied the request.

Lee is a Times Staff Writer and Ganguli is a Special Correspondent.


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