Kim Potter, Ex-cop Who Shot and Killed Daunte Wright, Released From Prison

Kim Potter, who used to be a police officer in Brooklyn Center, got out of prison in Shakopee on Monday morning after spending 16 months.

In April 2021, Potter shot and killed Daunte Wright during a traffic stop. She said she pulled out her gun instead of her Taser by accident.

She was later found guilty of first- and second-degree manslaughter and given a two-year prison term. This was a big change from the sentencing guidelines because Hennepin County Judge Regina Chu thought there were mitigating circumstances in the case.

Potter had to serve two-thirds of her two-year term in prison, and the rest she had to do under supervision.

The 50-year-old was let out of jail at 4 a.m. on Monday for security reasons and “out of an abundance of caution,” said Minnesota Department of Corrections spokesman Andy Skoogman.

“Based on the information we got, we let Ms. Potter out when we thought it was safest for her and everyone else at the prison,” Skoogman said.

Skoogman says that DOC intelligence officers learned things about Potter’s safety that “raised concern” based on the information they got before she was released. Some of the things said about her were scary, like “violent protests” could happen outside the Minnesota Correctional Facility–Shakopee.

On April 11, 2021, Potter pulled out a gun and shot Wright while yelling “Taser.” This can be seen and heard on body camera video. The former cop said she picked up the wrong gun by accident.

The tweet below confirms the news:

The Cops Stopped Wright

The cops stopped Wright because his tabs had run out. During the stop, the police found out that the man had a warrant out for his arrest because he had missed a court date for a gun charge. Police say that when an officer tried to arrest Wright, he got back in his car. At that point, Potter pulled out her gun and shot Wright.

The killing led to fights between police and protesters outside of the Brooklyn Center Police Precinct. This happened less than a year after former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin killed George Floyd, which led to days of civil unrest.

When he gave Potter his term, Chu said that the shorter sentence doesn’t change Wright’s life, but that Potter made “a tragic mistake.” She asked the community to feel sorry for Potter, saying that what she did wasn’t as bad as a normal manslaughter case.

For 1st-degree manslaughter, the maximum sentence is 15 years in prison, but judges can choose to give people who have never been in trouble before a sentence of between 6 and 8.5 years in jail.

State officials called Potter’s actions a “blunder of epic proportions,” saying she should have known better than to grab her gun when she meant to grab her Taser, which was on the other side of her body. Earl Gray, her lawyer, said Wright was to blame because he tried to get away from the police. Potter claimed that she grabbed her gun by accident because the situation was so chaotic.

Prosecutors wanted Potter to spend more than seven years in jail, but Chu said the state couldn’t prove the things it said made the crime worse.

Potter worked for 26 years as a police officer.

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