Daunte Wright shooting: Minnesota AG Keith Ellison to take over Brooklyn Center investigation

Former detective on Daunte Wright case: Death very possibly ’caused by negligence’ of police officer

Former D.C. homicide detective Ted Williams explains why the charges against former police officer Kim Potter are ‘right and appropriate.’

The office of Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison is taking control of the prosecution of former Brooklyn Center Police Officer Kimberly Potter, who was charged earlier this year in connection with the shooting death of Daunte Wright, officials said.

Ellison’s office announced Friday that he has accepted Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman’s request to lead the prosecution of Potter going forward. Ellison’s office has already begun reviewing the evidence and charges against Potter, who is facing second-degree manslaughter, according to a Friday press release. 

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    Daunte Wright (Facebook)(Facebook)

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    Demonstrators hold a banner in front of the FBI Minneapolis Division building as they march days after Daunte Wright, 20, was shot and killed by former Brooklyn Center Police Officer Kim Potter, in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, U.S., April 13, 2021. REUTERS/Nick Pfosi(Reuters)

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    FILE – This undated booking photo released by the Hennepin County, Minn., Sheriff shows Kim Potter, a former Brooklyn Center, Minn., police officer. (Hennepin County Sheriff via AP)( )

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    Katie and Aubrey Wright, parents of Daunte Wright, cry as the speak during funeral services of Daunte Wright at Shiloh Temple International Ministries in Minneapolis, Thursday, April 22, 2021. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez, Pool)( )

In a statement provided with the release, Ellison called Wright’s death a “tragedy.”

“Prosecutors are ministers of justice. This means we must and will follow justice wherever it leads. I promise the Wright family and all Minnesotans that I will handle this prosecution responsibly and consistent with the law, and that I will be guided by the values of accountability and transparency,” he said. “No one, however, should expect this case will be easy to prosecute. History shows that this case, like all cases of officer-involved deaths by deadly force, will be difficult.”

Potter is tentatively scheduled to stand trial on Dec. 6 for fatally shooting Wright, though it was not immediately clear if the date would change as a result of the switch. 

The 20-year-old, who is Black, died on April 11 after he was shot during a struggle with police, who were trying to arrest him during a traffic stop. Brooklyn Center’s former police chief, who resigned along with Potter after the shooting, has said he believes the longtime cop meant to use her Taser, and mistakenly fired the gun thinking it was the electricity device. Police body camera footage released after the shooting shows Potter yelling “Taser!” several times before firing her weapon.

Ellison’s office is coming off a victory in the conviction of former Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin, who was found guilty last month of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in the May 2020 death of George Floyd. 

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