After being convicted of first and second-degree manslaughter last week, Kim Potter provided another reason to doubt her remorse for shooting Daunte Wright.
The former Minneapolis officer who shot and killed Wright when she mistook her taser for her service weapon in April was all smiles in her mugshot after she was convicted. This is a stark contrast to just a few days earlier when Potter was all tears on the stand.
Many on social media noted Potter’s change in attitude and the Kool-Aid smile she sported, calling her out for acting on the stand and adding that she must have done the same in the immediate moments after shooting Wright on April 11.
According to NPR, Daunte Wright’s family called Potter’s conviction a “bittersweet” moment ahead of the Christmas holiday, when “what we’ll be able to look at is his urn on top of the fireplace.”
“It’s bittersweet still, you know, because Daunte is not here and tomorrow is Christmas,” Wright’s aunt, Naisha Wright, told NPR’s Morning Edition. “Very emotional, very emotional. Happy that, you know, there were guilty charges. But it’s very, very emotional because, again, he’s not here.”
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, who prosecuted the case, was happy with the verdict but said it does not represent “justice.”
“Accountability is not justice. Justice is restoration. Justice would be restoring Daunte to life and making the Wright family whole again,” Ellison said.
Potter is scheduled to be sentenced on Feb. 18. Her lawyers fought for her to be released until sentencing, saying she is not a flight risk and has been a model citizen outside of this situation. However, Judge Regina Chu denied the request.
State guidelines recommend seven years for first-degree manslaughter and four years for the second-degree manslaughter charge; however, prosecutors have indicated they will push for Potter to receive a longer sentence.
Civil rights attorney Ben Crum, who has represented the families of George Floyd, Rayshard Brooks, and Breonna Taylor, said he believes they are making progress in holding law enforcement accountable for killing Black Americans.
“It’s difficult to believe that in February, it will be 10 years since Trayvon Martin was profiled, pursued, and shot in the heart as he walked home with a bag of Skittles and a can of iced tea from the 7-Eleven” by George Zimmerman.
“And so, in February, we all will be saying, Trayvon Martin, 10 years later, how far has America come in its quest for racial justice? And I think the recent verdicts of guilty regarding the killers of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and most recently, Daunte Wright, will make a profound proclamation of the progress that we’ve made.”