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Kim Potter, Guilty. Thoughts?

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  • Kim Potter, Guilty. Thoughts?

    Kim Potter trial: Ex-officer found guilty of two counts of manslaughter for fatally shooting Daunte Wright (msn.com)

    I'm a little surprised on the 1st degree verdict, but I figured the 2nd degree was justified from the start with her being negligent with her weapon.

  • #2
    I think it was Wright's actions that put all the cops in danger in a matter of seconds. This needed to be considered, the 1st degree sounds too harsh. I believe one supervisor cop witness even said a live round would have been justified since Wright may have driven off with one of the officers still attached to the car. We need people who are willing to step up and be cops who have to put their lives in danger to arrest people, if over charging cops continues it will degrade our police protection IMO. Fewer will want to become cops, the liability will just be too much. Cops are not paid enough to loose all their immunity during arrests, this is a recipe for disaster. Doctors make mistakes also, but they get paid enough to have insurance. I don't see many doctors going to prison.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by uplink View Post
      I think it was Wright's actions that put all the cops in danger in a matter of seconds. This needed to be considered, the 1st degree sounds too harsh.
      Nope.

      First-degree manslaughter required prosecutors to prove that Potter caused Wright’s death while committing a misdemeanor — in her case, the reckless handling of a firearm. The second-degree charge required them to prove that she caused Wright’s death by “culpable negligence.”

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Requiem View Post
        I mean, you're not wrong. It does fit the definition.

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        • #5
          She should have been guilty of manslaughter. It's a sad situation all the way around. I don' think she deserves any more than 5 years though.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Atwater27 View Post
            She should have been guilty of manslaughter. It's a sad situation all the way around. I don' think she deserves any more than 5 years though.
            Minnesota's mandatory sentencing laws dictate 5 years minimum for second-degree manslaughter and at least 7-10 years for the first-degree charge. Prosecutors are going to argue more based on the circumstances surrounding the case, but it appears she will be doing at least 12 years in prison.

            Why do you think it should be five years at most? That's on the extremely low end for any singular manslaughter charge sentencing in any state.

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            • #7
              I have very mixed feeling about this, and listened to most of the trial.

              I have empathy for her, but her actions were highly negligent and resulted in someone's death. I don't think she ever intended to kill Wright, but she did.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Requiem View Post

                Minnesota's mandatory sentencing laws dictate 5 years minimum for second-degree manslaughter and at least 7-10 years for the first-degree charge. Prosecutors are going to argue more based on the circumstances surrounding the case, but it appears she will be doing at least 12 years in prison.

                Why do you think it should be five years at most? That's on the extremely low end for any singular manslaughter charge sentencing in any state.
                Liberal Judges, governors Mayors and District Attorneys have been calling for restorative justice, freeing violent criminals and rapists, ignoring or ending death penalties, commuting sentences, pushing for abolishment of prisons and alternative punishment. It wouldn't be a stretch to use some of their reasoning here. Unless, of course, her 'oppressor' racial and or law LEO status is used against her.
                Last edited by Atwater27; 12-27-2021, 06:12 AM.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by BroncoJoe View Post
                  I have very mixed feeling about this, and listened to most of the trial.

                  I have empathy for her, but her actions were highly negligent and resulted in someone's death. I don't think she ever intended to kill Wright, but she did.
                  I've only seen a little peripheral info on it, but the fact she clearly stated she thought she was pulling/firing her tazer, means that in her mind her life wasn't in imminent danger (imminent grave bodily harm or death -- justifiable homicide standard), which means she accidentally killed him. That comes with consequences.

                  Not sure what Wright did or didn't do, as I haven't read/watched anything about this, but what I did see made it seem like she had to be guilty of some type of manslaughter charge.

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                  • #10
                    Wright could have easily driven off with an officer stuck to the car. I think it was such a quick situation she probably flipped back and forth between pulling the gun vs. the phasor in her autonomous mind . A persons brain does not process information and direct the muscles instantaneously. I think 2nd degree manslaughter was the max she should have gotten (a few years in prison at max). The case seems to imply Wright's actions were okay and didn't lead to his death, when in actuality if he obeyed the officer he would be alive today.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by uplink View Post
                      Wright could have easily driven off with an officer stuck to the car. I think it was such a quick situation she probably flipped back and forth between pulling the gun vs. the phasor in her autonomous mind . A persons brain does not process information and direct the muscles instantaneously. I think 2nd degree manslaughter was the max she should have gotten (a few years in prison at max). The case seems to imply Wright's actions were okay and didn't lead to his death, when in actuality if he obeyed the officer he would be alive today.
                      I see you’re still fond of the taste of boots.



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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by swaiy View Post

                        I see you’re still fond of the taste of boots.


                        So you think Wright breaking away from his arrest and jumping in his car to take off with an officer potentially stuck to the side of the car was an okay thing to do?

                        If this happened to one of my relatives there is no way I would be blaming the cop, I'd blame my relative for trying to evade arrest and creating the situation.
                        Last edited by uplink; 12-28-2021, 01:54 PM.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by uplink View Post

                          So you think Wright breaking away from his arrest and jumping in his car to take off with an officer potentially stuck to the side of the car was an okay thing to do?

                          If this happened to one of my relatives there is no way I would be blaming the cop, I'd blame my relative for trying to evade arrest and creating the situation.
                          Don't get me wrong, nearly every high profile police shooting case we see involves a criminal resisting arrest, often violently, but in this case there was no immediate threat of grave bodily harm or death, and it's compounded by her reaction, which clearly showed she didn't intend to use deadly force. I think she made a horrible mistake, and I'm mixed over whether she should go to prison for it (having just watched the video and seeing that none of it would have happened if the guy hadn't resisted arrest and tried to escape). It's a tough one, but deadly force wasn't warranted, and people go to prison even for accidentally killing someone if it involved negligence.

                          It's hard to imagine people wanting to enter law enforcement as a profession -- or stay in it when they can retire with a pension.

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                          • #14
                            There is also video of her in another incident telling other LEOs to turn their bodycams.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Tned View Post

                              Don't get me wrong, nearly every high profile police shooting case we see involves a criminal resisting arrest, often violently, but in this case there was no immediate threat of grave bodily harm or death, and it's compounded by her reaction, which clearly showed she didn't intend to use deadly force. I think she made a horrible mistake, and I'm mixed over whether she should go to prison for it (having just watched the video and seeing that none of it would have happened if the guy hadn't resisted arrest and tried to escape). It's a tough one, but deadly force wasn't warranted, and people go to prison even for accidentally killing someone if it involved negligence.

                              It's hard to imagine people wanting to enter law enforcement as a profession -- or stay in it when they can retire with a pension.
                              Yes a mistake, maybe a 2nd degree manslaughter at most IMO with less than 5 in jail. You have to expect some human error from cops when put into very bad situations by people not obeying their instructions and the law. She had to be thinking the guy might have grabbed his gun (they knew he had one), it all happened so fast. Cops get shot all the time.

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                              • #16
                                Originally posted by uplink View Post

                                Yes a mistake, maybe a 2nd degree manslaughter at most IMO with less than 5 in jail. You have to expect some human error from cops when put into very bad situations by people not obeying their instructions and the law.
                                Agreed.

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                                • #17
                                  "You have to expect some human error."

                                  Like mistaking a taser for a gun and killing someone? Nope. Nobody should expect that.

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                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Requiem View Post
                                    "You have to expect some human error."

                                    Like mistaking a taser for a gun and killing someone? Nope. Nobody should expect that.
                                    That's a very simplistic view. Also, note he didn't say she should be found innocent, he only said second degree manslaughter, as it was a mistake in a high stress situation.

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                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Tned View Post
                                      That's a very simplistic view. Also, note he didn't say she should be found innocent, he only said second degree manslaughter, as it was a mistake in a high stress situation.
                                      No. It's a view relative to the events we are discussing. There was never an actual argument made by uplink as to why Minnesota's statute regarding first-degree manslaughter wasn't applicable to this situation.

                                      First-degree manslaughter required prosecutors to prove that Potter caused Wright’s death while committing a misdemeanor — in her case, the reckless handling of a firearm. The second-degree charge required them to prove that she caused Wright’s death by “culpable negligence.”
                                      I already linked to that earlier.

                                      Why should the prosecution only have sought the lesser charge? What absolves her (actions) from the most serious charge?

                                      Because it was a "mistake" in a high stress situation? Oof.

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                                      • #20
                                        Yes. Because it occurred in a struggle with a criminal resisting arrest (the common thread in nearly all of these high profile cases). While struggling to restrain a fleeing criminal she pulled the wrong weapon.

                                        She caused the death, and there should be consequences, but there were clearly mitigating circumstances.

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                                        • #21
                                          Originally posted by Tned View Post
                                          Yes. Because it occurred in a struggle with a criminal resisting arrest (the common thread in nearly all of these high profile cases). While struggling to restrain a fleeing criminal she pulled the wrong weapon.

                                          She caused the death, and there should be consequences, but there were clearly mitigating circumstances.
                                          Prosecutors really don't ignore pursuing charges they believe can be proven in a court of law.

                                          This is Minnesota's state statute regarding first-degree manslaughter.

                                          The fact that she was in a high stress situation has no bearing on whether or not a charge should or shouldn't be pursued.

                                          In reality, both the prosecution and defense will bring up mitigating circumstances in recommendations for sentencing.

                                          And at the end of the day, she is only going to see time served from the most serious charge. The second-degree charge is going to be irrelevant when she is actually sentenced.

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                                          • #22
                                            Originally posted by Requiem View Post
                                            "You have to expect some human error."

                                            Like mistaking a taser for a gun and killing someone? Nope. Nobody should expect that.
                                            I have to agree with this. If mistaking those two weapons can happen, then either not enough training is being applied, or there is incompetence.

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                                            • #23
                                              Originally posted by BamaBronco16 View Post
                                              I have to agree with this. If mistaking those two weapons can happen, then either not enough training is being applied, or there is incompetence.
                                              There is a reason why multiple resignations ensued in the aftermath of all this.

                                              I think it's quite reasonable to expect that routine traffic stops don't have this end result. But hey, I guess that's asking too much!

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                                              • #24
                                                Originally posted by Requiem View Post

                                                Prosecutors really don't ignore pursuing charges they believe can be proven in a court of law.

                                                This is Minnesota's state statute regarding first-degree manslaughter.

                                                The fact that she was in a high stress situation has no bearing on whether or not a charge should or shouldn't be pursued.

                                                In reality, both the prosecution and defense will bring up mitigating circumstances in recommendations for sentencing.

                                                And at the end of the day, she is only going to see time served from the most serious charge. The second-degree charge is going to be irrelevant when she is actually sentenced.
                                                It wasn't just high stress, it was attempting to restrain someone resisting arrest while also trying to retrieve a weapon.

                                                I don't feel strong enough to debate, especially since I've done minimal research on this case.

                                                What I will say is resisting arrest is the common thread with nearly all of these high profile cases. While I'm not a fan of mandatory minimums, this might be one where a one strike prison term is in order.

                                                We cannot keep putting cops in the no win situation of criminals thinking they can violently resist arrest and get away with it.

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                                                • #25
                                                  Originally posted by Requiem View Post

                                                  There is a reason why multiple resignations ensued in the aftermath of all this.

                                                  I think it's quite reasonable to expect that routine traffic stops don't have this end result. But hey, I guess that's asking too much!
                                                  Originally posted by Requiem View Post

                                                  There is a reason why multiple resignations ensued in the aftermath of all this.

                                                  I think it's quite reasonable to expect that routine traffic stops don't have this end result. But hey, I guess that's asking too much!
                                                  Given your politics, I would expect these politically tinged perspectives. I suppose we are all guilty of it.

                                                  Comment

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