Former Minnesota officer convicted in Wright killing released from prison

MINNESOTA – The former Minneapolis-area police officer convicted of killing Daunte Wright was released from prison on Monday after serving part of her sentence for the fatal shooting that took place while another white officer was on trial for George Floyd’s murder in a nearby courtroom.

Kimberly Potter, now 50, was found guilty of first- and second-degree manslaughter in the 2021 shooting of Wright, a 20-year-old Black man, during a traffic stop in the Minneapolis suburb of Brooklyn Center.

She had served 16 months of her two-year sentence and will remain on supervised release for the remaining third of the term, her attorney Earl Gray confirmed. He declined further comment.

Potter was unavailable for comment.

Wright was shot while Derek Chauvin, a former Minneapolis officer, was standing trial for killing Floyd in 2020 by pinning the 46-year-old Black man’s neck to the ground with his knee for about nine minutes.

Floyd’s death galvanized outrage over a pattern of alleged U.S. police mistreatment of Black people and led to protests around the world in the summer of 2020. A year later, the Wright killing triggered fresh demonstrations in the Minneapolis area, leading to multiple arrests and a citywide curfew.

During the traffic stop in which Potter shot Wright, officers learned that a warrant was out for his arrest on a misdemeanor weapons charge and tried to detain him.

When Wright resisted, Potter fired her handgun at him while shouting, “Taser, Taser, Taser!,” video from her body-worn camera showed. During her trial, Potter claimed she had mistaken her firearm for the non-lethal Taser.

After the sentence, Daunte Wright’s mother Katie Wright blasted the two-year sentence as too lenient and questioned the sincerity of Potter’s tearful testimony at trial. REUTERS

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