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Daunte Wright Shooting Trial – VERDICT WATCH Day 2 – NO VERDICT TODAY – Jury Having Trouble Reaching “Consensus”

Daunte Wright Shooting Trial – VERDICT WATCH Day 2 – NO VERDICT TODAY – Jury Having Trouble Reaching “Consensus”

No verdict yet after 14 hours of deliberation. Resume deliberations Wednesday. We will be LIVE again.

Welcome to our coverage of the Kim Potter manslaughter trial over the April 11, 2021, shooting death of Duante Wright in a suburb of Minneapolis, when then-police officer Potter unintentionally used her Glock 17 pistol in place of her intended Taser.

The case has been with the jury since 12:45 p.m. Central time on December 20, 2021. The jury is sequestered. The jury will resume deliberations at 9 a.m. Central today. We will monitor developments and will update if there are jury questions or other courtroom action. When a verdict is imminent, we will update the headline, and will also reach out on social media. And when the verdict is announced, we will be live.

For coverage of closings, including videos of closing arguments, see Daunte Wright Shooting Trial LIVE – Closing Arguments Over, Jury Gets The Case (updated)

Reminder – there are two Counts:

COUNT I – Charge: First-Degree Manslaughter Predicated on Reckless Use/Handling of a Firearm
COUNT II – Charge: Second-Degree Manslaughter

UPDATES
(most recent at top)(refresh page to show lastest)

December 21

7:10 p.m. Eastern – local media reporting the jury is done for the day. No verdict yet. Resume deliberations Wednesday. We will be LIVE again.

5:30 p..m. Eastern – Jury questions (submitted 4 p.m. Central) read in court:

First Question — “If the jury cannot reach consensus, what is the guidance around how long and what steps should be taken?” Answer: Judge re-reads a prior instruction: You should discuss the case and deliberate towards reaching a verdict without compromising oath.

Second Question — “Can the zip ties be removed fromExhibit 199 Potter’s gun so it can be held out of the evidence box?” Answer – Yes, hand deputy the gun in the box, the deputy will then remove the zip ties and give gun to you. After you are done with it, hand it back to the deputy.

Defense objected to judge rereading the single instruction, also objected to removing gun from the case for safety purposes. Prosecution says appopriate to give that instruction, it’s standard in lieu of the old “Allen” instruction.

5:20 p.m. Eastern – Jury has a question

December 20

Yesterday, the only courtroom action after deliberations started was a jury question:

4:20 p.m Eastern, 12/20/21 – Jury Question: What was the date of the Potter interview with Dr. Miller (question dated 2:58 p.m. CT). Judge says all the evidence is in, “you should rely on your collective memory as to what the evidence is.”

LIVE VIDEO FEED

Here’s a courtroom video feed, there will not be any courtroom activity unless the jury has more questions, otherwise communicates with the court, or reaches a verdict.

MY ASSESSMENT AFTER DAY 1 OF DELIBERATIONS

Needless to say, the best we can do is speculate what is going on with the jury behind closed doors. The Question the jury asked yesterday goes to the testimony of Dr. Laurence Miller, the psychological expert who testified about how the brain works, and how an officer by habit could unkowingly pull a gun rather than a taser because pulling the gun was practiced far more.

He testified as to his interview with Potter, and she also was questioned about what she told him about whether she saw the gun in her hand. That was a big point in the prosecution closing (at 6:10 of video below) because is she saw the gun and was aware she was holding it, perhaps that memory function doesn’t apply.

So the jury seems focused on that testimony, though which part of the testimony we don’t know, which would indicate in coming to a determination on recklessness or culpable negligence, they are considering whether she acted, in a sense, with the free will (“conscious” in the jury instruction) or fell victim to a psychological process. This would make sense for the jury to focus on this, because the facts of the case are not really in dispute or complicated. The prosecution does not claim that Potter deliberately pulled the gun. What is in dispute is whether the action of mistake and not recognizing the mistake before shooting rises to the level of recklessness or culpable negligence. On that the jury instructions do not give the jury much guidance.

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Comments

Regardless of how this case turns out, the real charge of recklessness should be lodged against the (names of individuals) people that had responsibility to select and train officers. This list starts with the local mayor, city council, and police chief, at the very least.

In my experience, people have characteristic responses to crisis.

Some people are naturally at their best in a crisis. They think and respond rapidly and well. Some people are are hysterics (men and women) who have to babble and scream for a while, before their minds are clear enough to act.

Some people can’t take relief. A person who is good in a crisis may collapse afterward, while the hysteric may pick up and carry on.

Some people are planners. They are fine beforehand, may be good or bad during crisis, and very likely the opposite when confronted with relief.

The people who hire and train police officers have business to identify and select people who are good in a crisis, and divert hysterics and planners to support roles, or give them the right kind of training to allow them to reach beyond their natural limitations.

The question presented is, whether this woman’s tendency toward hysteria was recognizable in advance, and was it ignored?

    g. ruqt in reply to Valerie. | December 21, 2021 at 12:48 pm

    Test your hypothesis by reading some number of U. S. Supreme Court oral argument transcripts recording the top legal minds in the country arguing their cases and count the errors made in addressing the Justices – all due to nerves. Why use a word like hysteria? Unless you have never been subject to “testing during battle?” Human reaction to stress has been studied for centuries and if you prefer Shakespeare or Freud’s descendants to court transcripts, read on, or visit the start of a marathon or triathlon to witness entrants pee in plastic bags due to stress.

    f2000 in reply to Valerie. | December 21, 2021 at 1:39 pm

    You never know how someone will act when suddenly in a life or death situation. This is true of police and of soldiers. Often it is the tough guys that break down and the person you thought might run that discovers heroism.

      Julio2121 in reply to f2000. | December 22, 2021 at 8:48 am

      That is incredibly insightful and so true. It’s a very odd experience to see the “bad ass” come apart and the least expected rise above and beyond.

    The people who created the risk of death to a suspect when the officer only intended to tase them are the people who compelled officers to carry tasers. It may be that they thought as a matter of public policy that the risk was not substantial, or it may be that they thought as a matter of public policy that whatever the level of risk was that the risk was justified. In any case, where the officer is required to carry a taser the officer is not responsible for creating the risk of death to a suspect when the officer unintentionally uses his firearm instead of the taser. In this case, whether there was weapons confusion or not is immaterial and irrelevant because the circumstances existed that authorized the use of a deadly weapon. Where there is no harm, there is no foul.

    I would imagine that the risk that an officer will be killed because he attempts to use a taser when the law allows the use of deadly force is more substantial than the risk that a suspect will be killed from the use of a taser or by weapons confusion, and I would say that that risk to the officer is unjustified in every case. Billy clubs are a hell of a lot cheaper than tasers and much more dependable.

      Think38 in reply to bigo. | December 21, 2021 at 3:42 pm

      The policy making decision (carry both a taser and a firearm) was done at the department level. Individual employees carrying out that policy shouldn’t be culpable for the readily foreseeable consequence (weapon confusion) that will happen in a fast moving and stressful situation.

      OldCop876 in reply to bigo. | December 21, 2021 at 4:29 pm

      You have a good point there about the requirement to carry both a gun, and a gun-shaped TASER on the duty belt. When my small department first got the TASER in 2007, I could immediately see the potential for not only “weapons confusion”, but also of officers confusing the TASER with something that had a role in a deadly encounter. It doesn’t. It’s highest and best use is in restraining a single non-compliant subject where there is no life risk to officers, and when the device simply keeps one from having to engage in a “hands on” fight with a subject who may be either under the influence of a substance or mentally disturbed.

      Our first TASER’s were quite large, and were worn in a drop-leg holster that was really inconvenient. So, I left mine in the patrol car and considered it a special use backup device. The two times I actually used it were cases where we had cornered a subject, and simply didn’t want 3 or 4 officers to pile on him, and maybe hurt him. It was a simple matter to radio for one officer to “bring up the TASER”. In those two cases it worked like a champ, saving injury to the subject. I considered it a really good addition to my backup equipment, but didn’t really need to be on my belt. When we got the smaller X26 units everyone started carrying them on the belt. It might have been better to leave them in the units, considering that our handguns were not optional and HAD to be on our belts. I retired in 2010 so it wasn’t my problem after that.

      Another point I’d like to mention is that the prosecution kept hammering the idea of the “highly trained police officer”, and the point that Potter had been “trained every year” in the use of her TASER. This is really a myth. While it is true that your original police training is quite detailed and rigorous, annual in-service training is not. About the only re-training taken even half seriously in most small to medium sized departments deals with firearms. Even then, this is often little more than walking on the range, firing 50-60 shots on a “qualification” course, recording your score, and then returning to duty.

      There are some few well-funded police departments that do a great job with re-training, but not many. I’ve seen many in-service sessions which have been little more than signing the attendance log, getting some coffee, and hearing a few war stories that are vaguely related to the announced topic. Don’t think for a minute that Potter was fully re-trained annually on her TASER. much less really drew and discharged one. That probably didn’t actually happen.

        Joe-dallas in reply to OldCop876. | December 21, 2021 at 5:03 pm

        Old – cop – good to hear a more reality based version.

        I did get the impression that she was not what several people would term an experienced police office. Long time employed but not “experienced” – not sure if that is the correct word,. She apparently had never used her taser in 12- 14 years where as you had used it twice in 3 years. The second thing that struck me was never having a complaint. I would have thought Police officers would have had 2 03 3 every five years, even if frivolous. – just nature of the job.

    thetaqjr in reply to Valerie. | December 22, 2021 at 2:50 am

    “ Some people are naturally at their best in a crisis.”

    How is that testable?

    How can anyone select those who are “naturally at their best in a crisis” when training ‘per se’ is training, and the trainee knows he’s not tasing a human even if he mistakenly glocks the ‘crisis-producing’ target?

    I’ve learned.

    If ever I make a legal stop of a suspect car and then learn that the driver has a live warrant for a firearms violation, I will tase his right rear tire with my Glock, and continue to be armed, remain in place, and be very patient.

    I don’t recollect why George wasn’t tased. For dadgum sure, glocking the right rear of that Escalade of choice would have abbreviated some 2020 arson and mayhem.

    Merry .Christmas

      thetaqjr in reply to thetaqjr. | December 22, 2021 at 3:01 am

      I forgot to claim that folks conducting crisis centers are almost never in crisis. Confronting all those crises as crises would infect those individuals with PTSD.

      If they actually live their days that way, in a set of perpetual, live crises, those, their experiences, could no longer be defined as a crises, could they?

So I just watched officer potter in the third video above, having not watched or heard her before. I have to say she is so bad. . between the baby talk answers and the long delays before answering a very simple question. I realize it is high pressure but she acts like she is sedated and/or faking this emotion. Compare her answers/reaction time in court to the other videos taken the day of the shooting. Totally different.

Compare to Rittenhouse who was emotional but engaged/engaging. She strikes me as trying to play the innocent grandma who doesn’t really know what’s going on around her. . I also note the outfits she wears which, again, are to make us view her as the doddering grandma.

Sorry, but she is totally fake and unbelievable to me. . .that doesn’t mean I think she is guilty but whoever coached her struck out.

The guilty party is Wright

he caused all this

he killed himself

    Pasadena Peabody in reply to REDACTED. | December 21, 2021 at 12:45 pm

    If you hold still and cooperate with the police things will work out a lot better.

      When one is trying to deal with this level of thinking, there usually is no good choice, just bad and worse. Axe me how I know. Ahile back I suggested that BLM was going to result in an increase in the number of deaths of young black males by making think that they were now bulletproof. The numbers of homicides, by police and others, over the last year suggests that I might have made the right prediction.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pL84CCuNhJo

    Olinser in reply to REDACTED. | December 21, 2021 at 5:39 pm

    Just because one person is guilty doesn’t mean the other one is automatically innocent.

until America solves the problem of young , vicious, lawbreaking black men,

throwing all the cops in the country under the bus will not help

not one bit

but, by all means, continue the coddling

Jonathan Cohen | December 21, 2021 at 1:21 pm

The judge disallowed Wright’s history of criminal activity and his previous instances of fleeing arrest because she said Potter would have been unaware of that and so the prior history did not affect her frame of mind. On the other hand, the prosecution’s use of force expert was allowed to testify that the use of a taser was not justified because Potter had no right to use it to prevent his flight.

Here we are left with the question of what is the responsibility of a police officer when faced with a fleeing suspect. Under what circumstance is lethal force allowed or for that matter when is a taser justified. The problem with the judges ruling that prior behavior is inadmissible is that in the absence of specific knowledge, the officer is forced to make an instantaneous judgment and it is a roll of the dice.

Wright was likely under the influence of pot. Sergeant Jophnson was partially in the car. There was a restraining order on Wright obtained by an unidentified woman. There was a bench warrant requiring Wright.s arrest.and Wright was attempting to flee. Under those circumstances, what measures are required of the police officer to prevent Wright’s escape.

If, as the state’s use of force officer suggests, submitting to arrest is optional when the police have the option of arresting him later, the society is reduced to a state of anarchy. Civil order depends on people responding to the orders of police officers. If responding to the commands of police officers become a matter of choice, the society will descend into chaos.

Potter clearly shot Wright by accident as in the spur of the moment she felt she needed to prevent his flight. This was a split second decision and in the heat of the moment she grabbed the wrong weapon and the incident ended tragically.

In considering how to decide the case, one has to ask, how will law enforcement react if she is found guilty. If under conditions of uncertainty, officers are forced to opt for allowing felons to flee, what happens when a suspect escapes and goes on to commit serious felonies. For example, if wright’s impaired driving from smoking pot lead to a fatal traffic accident, if the woman in the car was actually the one with the restraining order, or Wright simply went on to commit more felonies, then what is the officer’s culpability in allowing the escape.

It is difficult to see how police can preserve civic order if they are forced to make split second decisions in situations where they must guess what the fleeing suspect is likely to do and if they guess wrong, they are subject to punishment.

    “On the other hand, the prosecution’s use of force expert was allowed to testify that the use of a taser was not justified because Potter had no right to use it to prevent his flight.”

    A use of force expert is not a legal expert and this testimony was outside the scope of his “expertise” and should have been objected to and stricken from the record. Wright was clearly attempting to escape by the use of an automobile as a deadly weapon and two different statutes gave all three of the officers the right to use deadly force, one statute to prevent the escape and the other statute to protect themselves and the public from imminent gbh or death.

    No one ever becomes a use of force expert without having used deadly force against another or having had another use deadly force against them. Just like people thinking they are experts in the use of firearms when they have never had an unintentional discharge, you don’t become a firearms expert until you have experienced an unintentional discharge and thereby realized that they can happen to anyone. The armorer on the Rust set was not a firearms expert, she said the best part of her job was teaching people how “safe” guns were and that there was no reason to be afraid of them. Now she has experience in just how dangerous and deadly they are and she can correctly teach people just how “dangerous” they are and that they should always be afraid of guns.

Dr. Laurence Miller covers a fascinating area that needs more attention.

Mindset can be incredibly powerful ro the point that it really doesn’t matter if you are looking at something directly you will only ever see what your mind wants you to see.

For example many years ago a friend or mine was involved in a plane crash (she was a commercial pilot) that actually led to pilot error being removed as a reason for an event happening (simply because you will never understand the root cause of an issue if you hide it behind a meaningless label such as pilot error).

Anyway she ran in to icing issues one flight that caused her engines to fail and she belly landed the aircraft.

Turns out engineers had installed a few critical switches upside down so on was off and off was on.

So even though she could see certain lights were not coming on to indicate a switch was in the on position her mind told her she had turned things on when in fact she had done the opposite.

She was telling me that even though she could see the lights weren’t engaged her brain was telling her she had done the right thing (even though she hadnt).

Anyway, long story short eventually the CAA amended cause of crash from pilot error to incorrect maintenance and cockpit operations. The up side is root cause was identified and pilots and operators could put in place procedures to protect against this happening again.

But yeah, she was fascinated by how she could early see something wasn’t on BUT her brain wouldn’t allow her to understand her actions were not correct.

    Milhouse in reply to mailman. | December 22, 2021 at 12:48 pm

    I would just have assumed the “on” lights were malfunctioning, and the machines were indeed on.

    Milhouse in reply to mailman. | December 22, 2021 at 12:52 pm

    We see mindset several times every summer, when parents whose normal routine does not involve having a child in the back seat do have a child there for some reason, and when they reach their destination they forget the child is there and leave them in the car. This is not negligence, it’s a genuine mental phenomenon that can happen to anyone.

    It didn’t use to happen when children could be put in the front seat, or at least facing forward in the back, so the parent would be constantly interacting with them while driving.

OTOH, weight was a typical thug roaming around the streets. OTOH, I expect cops to be able to arrest someone and know the difference between gun and taser.

Perhaps getting rid of tasers would have helped her, and shutting her mouth after the incident. This was a clean shooting all the way.

    Shutting your mouth always helps the defense. You will hardly ever see a criminal case where the words that come out of the defendant’s mouth are not used against them. In most justified use of force cases the words that came out of their own mouth is the only evidence against them.

The policy making decision (carry both a taser and a firearm) was done at the department level. Individual employees carrying out that policy shouldn’t be culpable for the readily foreseeable consequence (weapon confusion) that will happen in a fast moving and stressful situation.

I don’t understand why this woman is being charged with anything? I was always under the assumption that when someone resists arrest they run the risk of being shot/killed/injured whether it be intentional or accidental. I live in TX and remember in High School we had a cop come and talk to us about encountering the police, and the main thing they told us was to comply with police and if there is a dispute to take it up with the courts not the cops. Not sure if they do that in MN but I think it should be mandatory everywhere so these types of incidents can be avoided.

    panamapat in reply to rubii328. | December 22, 2021 at 8:59 am

    That is not only good practice. This policewoman shot a wanted suspect, resisting arrest and attempting to flee in automobile that would ave resulted in a dangerous high speed pursuit. Wright made a bad felonious decision and died as a result.

I need to see the written jury instructions before I have any basis for determining whether the defendant has a chance of being convicted or not in this case. From the prosecution’s closing and the rulings on motions in this trial, I would say the jury instructions are erroneous and there is a high probability of a conviction on both counts, although there was not even sufficient evidence for probable cause to issue an arrest warrant for the defendant in the first place and no such evidence was admitted on the record in this case.

This is a natural pairing with the Alec Baldwin case. I have immersed myself in that one.

Char Char Binks | December 21, 2021 at 7:52 pm

Every cop needs to dump his Taser in the trash. If you need a Taser, a Glock will suffice; if you need a Glock, a Taser will not. Why risk it?

    James B. Shearer in reply to Char Char Binks. | December 22, 2021 at 12:08 am

    “Every cop needs to dump his Taser in the trash. ..”

    Individual cops don’t get to make that decision. If you don’t like your conditions of employment you need to find a different job.

Should the jury come back hung I have two questions.

1. I believe the poliuce union pays for her defense. Do they keep paying?
2. Do yasou get to appeal the judges rulings on things before the second trial?

Why would any reasonable person enter into the law enforcement profession knowing their careers and lives depended on not ever throughout your career making an error some libtard prosecutors will condemn as an unreasonable amount of force against a fleeing, violent suspect? The only criminals in this courtroom are the prosecutors who brought these baseless charges and the judge who did not immediately dismiss them.

The basic facts of this case could have been stipulated to by the defense. The death of Daunte Wright was the result of a tragic mistake. But that wouldn’t have satisfied the main reason for this prosecution. The state must have its pound of flesh to give the angry mob. The prosecution, like human Raptors animated by the prospect of publicly eviscerating their victim, broken and dragged before them for public viewing, were disgusting. This has been dangerous and futile effort to satisfy the blood lust of those who would have us believe that looting, burning, pillaging, stealing and destruction of property is a legitimate forms of protest. It has been a travesty of justice and dangerous to all who seek to be law abiding. Kim Potter, a twenty-sixth year veteran police officer who had never discharged any weapon in the course of her duty made a tragic error in the course of a traffic stop gone awry. Is the standard for service now perfection or only inconsequential errors? Her main error of judgement may have been in not taking early retirement after the third precinct police station in downtown Minneapolis was offered to the mobs. Who’s next”