Krocodile Kyle, is that you?
“I was very distraught, I’m so sorry.” These were the words of former Minnesota police officer, Kim Potter, who sobbed as she testified Friday about the moment she fatally shot Black motorist Daunte Wright after “accidentally” reaching for her handgun instead of her Taser.
“We were struggling. We were trying to keep him from driving away. It just went chaotic,” said Potter during her trial.
Potter has been charged with first and second-degree manslaughter over Wright’s death. In order to have her convicted, prosecutors must prove she acted with recklessness or culpable negligence when she defied years of training and mixed up the weapons.
“I remember yelling ‘Taser! Taser! Taser!’ and nothing happened, and then he told me I shot him,” she said in tears. “I’m sorry it happened. I’m so sorry,” she added. “I didn’t want to hurt anybody.”
Potter openly admitted to prosecutor Erin Eldridge that she did not see any weapon in Wright’s possession and that he never threatened or punched her or her fellow officers.
However, she did say that one of the officer’s faces had “a look of fear” that she’s never seen before and that brought up concern. She was also concerned there may have been a weapon in Wright’s vehicle after she learned upon pulling him over that he was wanted on a warrant for a gun charge. Which of course, her defense team raised as evidence that it was a potentially dangerous situation that warranted her use of force.
We call BS but let us continue on with the story.
Potter also testified that had she been alone she wouldn’t have stopped. However she was training junior officer, Anthony Luckey, and he felt the need to pull Mr. Wright over for expired tags and they proceeded to do so.
When they discovered the weapons warrant, Potter said she and her fellow officers agreed there was greater danger in approaching the vehicle.
According to CNN, while Potter was on the stand prosecutor Erin Eldridge quizzed her extensively on her many years of training both as an officer and using stun guns in an effort to establish that she should have been easily able to distinguish her Taser from her handgun even in situations of high stress.
Potter was shown two photos of the weapons and was asked to identify the differences between the two.
“These items look different, don’t they?” Eldridge asked.
“Yes,” Potter responded.
Police dashcam was also presented in court showing Potter putting her hand on her gun holster on her right side even as she approached the vehicle.
The comments she made immediately after she fired the deadly shots were also played in court. Potter said, “Oh, s***. I shot him. I grabbed the wrong f***g gun. Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God. I’m going to prison.” per CNN.
Potter told the court that she resigned from her job to prevent “bad things happening to the city.” She has since sold her home and moved out of state.
Potter’s defense team called to the stand Laurence Miller, an expert in police psychology at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton.
He proceeded to explain the disputed concept of “slip and capture” to the 12 member jury.
“You intend to do one thing, think you’re doing that thing, but do something else and only realize later that the action that you intended was not the one you took,” he said.
Miller stated that this action error could’ve led to “weapon confusion.”
Potter was the last person who testified on the stand and closing arguments will begin Monday.