The former Minnesota police officer charged with shooting Daunte Wright has been released from jail on a $100,000 bond while protests erupted for the fourth day over his death.
Kimberly Potter, 48, was released from the Hennepin County jail at 5.38pm – just hours after she was arrested around 11.30am on Wednesday by Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension agents in St. Paul, according to jail records.
Earlier Wednesday, the former Brooklyn Center officer was charged with second-degree manslaughter for killing Wright, a 20-year-old black man, in the Minneapolis suburb on Sunday.
Her first court appearance is scheduled for Thursday in downtown Minneapolis.
Kimberly Potter, 48, was released from the Hennepin County jail at 5.38pm after posting a $100,000 bond
Ben Crump, the civil rights attorney who represents Wright’s family, told CNN in an interview that Potter has a right to a reasonable bond and is presumed innocent until she has been convicted.
Under Minnesota law, a second-degree manslaughter charge is filed when a person is accused of causing another person’s death through negligence that created an unreasonable risk, and of consciously taking the chance of causing severe injury or death.
If convicted, Potter faces up to 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine. However, sentencing guidelines for someone without a criminal record call for no more than four years behind bars.
Potter shot and killed Wright Sunday during a traffic stop just 10 miles from the courthouse where another white cop Derek Chauvin is currently being tried for the murder of black man George Floyd.
The veteran officer, who has worked for the department for 26 years, allegedly confused her gun for a Taser. She resigned from the force Tuesday as protests erupted in the city demanding justice for Wright.
Imran Ali, Washington County assistant criminal division chief and director of the Major Crime Unit, said in a statement announcing the charges that the state will ‘vigorously prosecute this case’ against the veteran cop.
‘Certain occupations carry an immense responsibility and none more so than a sworn police officer,’ said Ali.
‘With that responsibility comes a great deal of discretion and accountability. We will vigorously prosecute this case and intend to prove that Officer Potter abrogated her responsibility to protect the public when she used her firearm rather than her Taser.
‘Her action caused the unlawful killing of Mr. Wright and she must be held accountable.’
Ali and County Attorney Peter Orput had met with Wright’s family prior to announcing the charges, assuring them ‘we would spare no resources in seeking justice for Mr. Wright,’ said Ali.
New details about the fatal shooting were also released by the attorney’s office Wednesday.
Potter had been training a rookie cop, named in the criminal complaint as Brooklyn Center Police Officer Anthony Luckey, on Sunday when she shot Wright dead.
According to the criminal complaint, Luckey and Potter pulled Wright over while he was driving his white Buick at 63rd and Orchard Avenues North in Brooklyn Center at 1.53pm Sunday.
Police previously said Wright, who has a toddler son, was first pulled over for expired license plate tags when he was driving with his girlfriend.
Luckey ran Wright’s identification and found he had a warrant out for his arrest for a gross misdemeanor weapons charge, the complaint states.
Four minutes later at 2:01:31, Luckey and Potter approached the driver’s side of the car and asked Wright to get out and place his hands behind his back, according to the report.
Wright did as the officers asked and Luckey told him he was being arrested for his outstanding warrant.
Both Wright and Luckey stood just outside of the open driver’s side door, while Potter stood behind and to the right of the other officer, the report says.
Seconds later at 2:01:49, Wright reportedly pulled away from the officers and got back into the car, with Luckey trying to maintain physical control of him, according to the complaint.
At 2:01:55, Potter then said she would us the Taser on Wright.
Instead, she pulled her Glock 9mm handgun with her right hand and pointed it at Wright, saying again that she would use the Taser on him.
Potter shouted ‘Taser, Taser, Taser,’ as she pulled the trigger on her handgun at 2:02:01, firing one round into the left side of the victim, the complaint states.
Wright immediately said ‘ah, he shot me,’ and drove away in his car before crashing and coming to a stop.
Meanwhile, Potter said ‘S**t, I just shot him!’ after firing her gun.
The entire incident from the traffic stop to the shooting took place within nine minutes and Wright was pronounced dead at the scene.
Potter left her home in Minneapolis on Monday with her 54-year-old husband Jeffrey and their sons Sam and Nick after her address was posted on social media. Police guarded the property Tuesday night and fencing was erected around it.
It was not immediately clear if Potter would be returning to the home after posting her bail.