‘I was stunned at the verdict’: Judge Jeanine Pirro responds to Kim Potter case

Fox News host Jeanine Pirro claimed to be “stunned” by the verdict in former Brooklyn Center, Minn., police officer Kim Potter’s case after she was convicted of first- and second-degree manslaughter for fatally shooting Daunte Wright during a traffic stop earlier this year.

“I must tell you, I was stunned at the verdict. It is a kind of verdict that, you know, none of us really expected, especially manslaughter in the first degree,” said Pirro, who had called in to “The Story with Martha MacCallum” on Thursday.

“This woman clearly didn’t intend to cause any harm to Daunte Wright. But we know what the law is and the law talks about recklessness and culpable negligence. She was negligent. There’s no question about it,” Pirro, a former county judge in New York state and district attorney, continued.

“But this case like a lot of cases, the shock that she displayed at the time right after she realized she shot him and even before when she says ‘taser, taser, taser”’ indicates that her mind is not really connecting with what she’s doing,” Pirro added.

“I think in the four corners of a courtroom when a jury looks at the difference between a taser and a real gun, they’re going to say, ‘How can she get the two mixed up?’ So legally based on the law, the decision was correct based on the four corners of what was going on in that courtroom,” Pirro contended.

Following her conviction, Potter now faces a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. However, in accordance with laws in Minnesota, she will become eligible for release after serving two-thirds of her sentence and one-third of supervised release for good behavior.

In April, as Potter and other officers were attempting to detain Wright, 20 because he was wanted on an outstanding warrant, he struggled with them to escape by climbing into his vehicle and attempting to drive away. As he did, Potter shouted several times, “I’ll Tase you! I’ll Tase you! Taser! Taser! Taser!” according to bodycam footage.

But instead of drawing her taser, she drew her handgun and fired a single shot a split second before the vehicle sped away, only to crash a short distance later.

She is heard on the bodycam after firing saying, “Holy (expletive)! I shot him.”

Not long after, Potter, a 26-year veteran, sent a short letter of resignation to Brooklyn Center Mayor Mike Elliot and other city officials.

“I am tendering my resignation from the Brooklyn Center Police Department effective immediately. I have loved every minute of being a police officer and serving this community to the best of my ability, but I believe it is in the best interest of the community, the department, and my fellow officers if I resign immediately,” she wrote.

Elliot told reporters that while he appreciated Potter tendering her resignation, he had not demanded it.

The mayor of the city, which is a suburb of Minneapolis, also said he hoped her resignation would “bring some calm to the community,” but that he nevertheless would continue working towards “full accountability under the law.”

“That’s what we’re going to continue to work for. We have to make sure that justice is served, justice is done. Daunte Wright deserves that, his family deserves that,” he added.

Jon Dougherty


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