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Author: Andrew Branca

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Andrew Branca

Andrew F. Branca is in his third decade of practicing law in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. He wrote the first edition of the "Law of Self Defense" in 1997, and is currently in the process of completing the fully revised and updated second edition, which you can preorder now at lawofselfdefense.com. He began his competitive shooting activities as a youth in smallbore rifle, and today is a Life Member of the National Rifle Association (NRA) and a Life Member and Master-class competitor in multiple classifications in the International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA). Andrew has for many years been an NRA-certified firearms instructor in pistol, rifle, and personal protection, and has previously served as an Adjunct Instructor on the Law of Self Defense at the SigSauer Academy in Epping, NH. He holds or has held concealed carry permits for Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Maine, Pennsylvania, Florida, Utah, Virginia, and other states.

In what appears to be yet another politically-motivated prosecution of a white police officer who lawfully defended himself from a violent, non-compliant black suspect, Grand Rapids Officer Christopher Schurr has been charged with second-degree murder over the April 4, 2022 shooting death of Patrick Lyoya, according to FOX News. I previously wrote about this case right here at Legal Insurrection back in April:

Reminder: Fighting a Cop for Control of Taser Will Likely Get You Lawfully Shot

Reminder: Fighting a Cop for Control of Taser Will Likely Get You Lawfully Shot On April 4, 2022, Patrick Lyoya was shot and killed by a Grand Rapids police officer after violently fighting lawful arrest following an attempt to flee a traffic stop, and after refusing to give up control of the Taser Lyoya had seized from the officer during their struggle. Essentially the entirety of the physical confrontation between Lyoya and the officer was captured on video, in various forms—the officer’s body camera until that was disabled in the struggle, the officer’s dash camera video from his patrol vehicle, and a bystander’s smartphone video.  These videos were yesterday released by the Grand Rapids Police Department, along with extensive commentary, during an hour-long press conference.  You can watch that press conference in its entirety here:

On November 5, 2021, Kyle Carruth fatally shot Chad Read in the chest in a child custody-associated dispute taking place outside Carruth's Texas home. On March 31, 2022, news media announced that a special grand jury convened in this case returned a "no true bill," meaning they declined to indict Carruth on any criminal charges for his having killed Read. Accordingly, it appears that Carruth will face no criminal liability over this event (although he continues to sued civilly over his killing of Read).

I’d like to share some quick observations on the conviction of Kim Potter on two counts of manslaughter over the shooting death of Daunte Wright.  I realize that the conviction is now a week past, but feel obliged to write up my closing thoughts on the case if only to close the circle on this trial on which we all invested considerable time and effort.

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. Today was the eighth day of the trial proper, and the final day for testimony.  That testimony was provided by Professor Laurence Miller, an expert on “slip & capture” errors, and by the defendant Kim Potter herself.  There were no real surprises on the merits from either one of these witnesses.

Welcome to our coverage of the Kim Potter manslaughter trial over the April 11, 2021, shooting death of Daunte Wright in a suburb of Minneapolis, when then-police officer Potter accidentally used her Glock 17 pistol in place of her intended Taser. I expect that today we will see the State rest its case in chief, and the defense will finally get its turn to start calling witnesses.

Welcome to our coverage of the Kim Potter manslaughter trial over the April 11, 2021, shooting death of Daunte Wright in a suburb of Minneapolis, when then-police officer Potter accidentally used her Glock 17 pistol in place of her intended Taser. I expect that the defense cross-examination of use-of-force trainer Sergeant Mike Peterson first thing this morning will be LIT!

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 accidentally used her Glock 17 pistol in place of her intended Taser. Today was the fifth day of the Potter trial and was most notable for being one of the single most boring days of court proceedings of my 30-year career.  The State managed to move completely through only a single witness and barely finished direct examination on their second witness of the day before Judge Chu had blessed mercy on the jury and observers and recessed the court for the day.

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

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 accidentally used her Glock 17 pistol in place of her intended Taser. Today was the fourth day of the trial proper, and although today the State worked through seven more of its witnesses in its case in chief it nevertheless appeared to once again to do little but provide evidence on factual matters not in dispute and to which I’m confident the defense would have been happy to stipulate.

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

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 accidentally used her Glock 17 pistol in place of her intended Taser. Today was the third day of the trial proper, and although today the State worked through three more of its key witnesses in its case in chief it nevertheless appeared to move no closer to showing the court, the jury, or the public any actual evidence of reckless manslaughter on the part of defendant Kim Potter.

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