Court Battles

Daunte Wright family lawyers call for ‘strongest and most just sentence’ for ex-officer

Three lawyers representing the family of the late 20-year-old Daunte Wright on Thursday called for the “strongest and most just sentence possible” for the former Brooklyn Center, Minn., police officer who fatally shot him.

A jury found the ex-officer, Kim Potter, guilty earlier Thursday of first-degree and second-degree manslaughter in Wright’s death in April. Potter has said she intended to fire her stun gun at Wright during a traffic stop but grabbed her firearm by mistake.

“The family of Daunte Wright is relieved that the justice system has provided some measure of accountability for the senseless death of their son, brother, father, and friend,” attorneys Ben Crump, Antonio Romanucci and Jeff Storms said in a statement. 

“We must now turn our attention to ensuring that Kim Potter receives the strongest and most just sentence possible. It is also imperative that we focus on the conduct of Brooklyn Center and pinpoint its systemic failures that contributed to Daunte’s unlawful death,” the three added.

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison said in a news conference following the jury’s verdict that “we have a degree of accountability for Dante’s death,” while adding “accountability is not justice. Justice is restoration.”

“Justice would be restoring Dante to life and making the Wright family whole again. Justice is beyond the reach that we have in this life for Daunte. But accountability is an important step, a critical, necessary step on the road to justice for us all,” Ellison added.

Asked what kind of sentence Ellison would be calling for, the Minnesota attorney general answered “a fair one.”

The trial was at times emotional as Wright’s family reminisced over the son, brother and father they had lost, while Potter, who also took the witness stand, broke down and apologized for killing the 20-year-old.

Ellison made clear during the news conference that the community still held law enforcement in high regard despite Potter’s jury verdict.

“We hold you in high regard,” Ellison said of law enforcement and public safety officials. “And we also hold you to high standards. We don’t want you to be discouraged. Your community respects and appreciates you.”

“We want you to uphold the highest ideals of our society and ideals of safety. And when a member of your profession is held accountable, it does not diminish you. In fact, it shows. It shows the whole world that those of you who enforce the law are also willing to live by it. And that’s a good thing. It restores trust, faith and hope,” Ellison added.

Tags Ben Crump Daunte Wright Keith Ellison Keith Ellison Kim Potter Minnesota

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