By Setareh Jalali This is part of our Youth BIPOC Spotlight series that highlights young…
By Al Jazeera
The former United States police officer charged with manslaughter for fatally shooting 20-year-old Black motorist Daunte Wright during a traffic stop near Minneapolis last month will go on trial beginning on December 6, a state judge said on Monday.
Kimberly Potter, 48, was captured on her colleague’s body-worn camera attempting to arrest Wright on an outstanding warrant in the suburban city of Brooklyn Center on April 11.
The footage showed Potter approaching Wright as he stands outside of his car as another officer is arresting him.
As Wright struggled with police, Potter shouted, “I’ll Tase you! I’ll Tase you! Taser! Taser! Taser!” before firing a single shot from a handgun in her right hand.
The deadly shooting, which came as the Minneapolis trial of ex-officer Derek Chauvin for the killing of George Floyd was under way, spurred large protests in Brooklyn Center demanding an end to police brutality against Black people.
Police have said Wright was pulled over for expired tags, but they sought to arrest him after discovering an outstanding warrant.
The warrant was for his failure to appear in court on charges that he fled from officers and had a gun without a permit during an encounter with Minneapolis police in June.
The city’s former police chief, Tim Gannon, said Potter – who resigned following the shooting – mistakenly used her gun instead of her Taser.
Potter did not enter a plea during her initial court appearance last month, and her lawyer did not respond to the Reuters news agency’s requests for comment.
The December 6 trial date was set during a brief videoconference hearing on Monday, known as an omnibus hearing under Minnesota law, before Hennepin County District Judge Regina Chu.
Potter, dressed in black, appeared alongside her lawyer Earl Gray in his office. She spoke only to say she understood and did not object to the proceeding being held virtually.
The shooting happened during the trial of Chauvin, the white former Minneapolis police officer who was convicted of murder for pressing his knee against Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes in May last year.
Floyd’s killing, which was captured on camera, set off mass protests across the US and around the world demanding an end to police violence against Black people.
Chauvin and the three other officers present during Floyd’s death also face federal charges of violating Floyd’s civil rights.
SOURCE: Al Jazeera