Juror: Kim Potter made a mistake, but was still responsible

MINNEAPOLIS (AP), Kim Potter, a Minnesota police officer, was convicted of manslaughter in Daunte Wright's murder. Jurors said she made an honest error when she drew her gun instead of her stun guns. However she was still responsible.

Juror: Kim Potter made a mistake, but was still responsible

Lou Raguse, KARE-TV's reporter, spoke to the juror about the condition of anonymity because of what Lou described as "public animosity." The story was published Wednesday by KARE-TV.

Although the juror stated that no one believed Potter was racist or meant for Wright to die, it doesn't mean she is above the law.

The juror stated that she did not want to speak on behalf of all jurors but she believed she was an honest person. She even thought she was a good police officer. "No one believed she was intentionally doing this. It is absurd that people assume she was racist. It never happened or something like that. Although we thought she was a good person and made mistakes, it did not excuse her from the fact that she had committed a crime.

"Being a good person does not mean that you are above the law. It's not like anyone wanted to kill that person that day. ... It was a tragic accident all around.

Potter shot and killed Wright, aged 20, in April while he was trying to drive away from Brooklyn Center, a Minneapolis suburb.

Potter, a 26 year veteran of the city's police force, claimed she intended to use her stun guns on Wright, but she didn't know she had drawn and fired her gun. Wright was Black. The shooting occurred while Derek Chauvin (a white officer) was on trial in Minneapolis for George Floyd's murder. The shooting sparked anger in Brooklyn Center.

Potter, 49, was fired from the police department just two days after the shooting. Prosecutors brought her up for first- and second degree manslaughter. Wright testified at her trial and said she was sorry for the accident that occurred and that the traffic stop "just got chaotic".

After deliberating for nearly 27 hours, the jury convicted her on Dec. 23. According to Minnesota's sentencing guidelines she faces seven years imprisonment, but prosecutors say they will seek a longer sentence.

KARE-TV's Raguse was informed by a juror that they didn't believe Potter lied and believed she was fighting for her own life. The jury thought Potter should have known that she was carrying a pistol, and not a stungun, given her police experience. A juror stated that Potter's stun gun was handled by the jury and they felt the difference.

The juror stated that the gun was twice as heavy and that the weapons were fired in different ways. The Taser feels almost like clicking a mouse, while the trigger of the pistol has some weight.

Juror stated that Potter's lawyers seemed disorganized. Their argument that Wright died from resisting was rejected by the juror.

The juror stated that although we did discuss Daunte’s actions, the jury did a great job of distinguishing his actions from Kim Potter’s. "Daunte’s actions clearly had consequences. So did Kim Potter's."

According to the juror, sometimes deliberations got heated and discussions turned in circles. Nearly all jurors cried at one point.

"Once we reached our final verdict. . . "We still had to wait an extra hour and a quarter before it was read," the juror stated. "So, that last hour and half, I finally allowed myself to consider the consequences of this tragedy. We had already been discussing what this meant to Daunte Wright's loved ones, but I began to consider what it meant for Kim Potter's.

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