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Judge allows 2 charges to stand against ex-cop in Daunte Wright shooting

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Judge allows 2 charges to stand against ex-cop in Daunte Wright shooting
Kim Potter, a former police officer in Brooklyn Center, Minn., shot Daunte Wright in April during a traffic stop. File Photo courtesy Hennepin County Jail

Oct. 28 (UPI) -- Kim Potter, the former Minnesota police officer involved in the shooting death of Daunte Wright early this year, will face first- and second-degree manslaughter charges, a judge has ruled.

Potter shot Wright during a traffic stop on April 11 while trying to arrest him on an outstanding warrant. Authorities have said it's likely that Potter intended to use her stun gun but mistakenly pulled her firearm.

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Prosecutors, at the urging of Attorney General Keith Ellison, originally charged Potter, a 26-year veteran of the police force in Brooklyn Center, Minn., with both manslaughter charges. Potter's attorneys, though, asked for the most serious charge, first-degree manslaughter to be dropped.

Hennepin County District Judge Regina Chu denied the motion, saying there was sufficient evidence to support probable cause for the added first-degree manslaughter charge.

Potter's trial is scheduled to begin with jury selection on Nov. 30.

Potter, who was training another officer at the time, stopped Wright for a minor traffic violation. They learned through a records check he had a warrant for a gross misdemeanor weapons violation and attempted to arrest him.

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When Wright, 20, resisted and got back to his vehicle, Potter said "I'll tase you," but drew her 9mm handgun instead and hit Wright with a single shot.

The shooting happened during the middle of the Derek Chauvin trial in Minneapolis, the former police officer convicted in George Floyd's death.

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