Minnesota police officer Kim Potter was convicted of manslaughter in the killing of Daunte Wright despite the fact that jurors felt she made an honest mistake when she drew her firearm instead of her stun gun because she was still responsible for his death, a member of the jury told KARE-TV. The jury deliberated for 27 hours over four days before convicting her of both counts on Dec. 23. She faces close to seven years in prison under Minnesota’s sentencing guidelines. During the unusually long deliberations, the jurors focused on interpretations of the jury instructions and the law. “Those last couple days were literally just focusing in on the language of the law,” the juror said.
The juror said when they reached the final day and a half of deliberations, they had already decided beyond a reasonable doubt that Potter was guilty of second-degree manslaughter. But two jurors, a middle-aged man and a woman, were holding out on the higher count. Aside from the language of the law tripping them up, they shared concern over the consequences Potter would face if she was guilty. “We felt like she was a good person, we felt she made a mistake, and that a mistake does not absolve you from the fact she did commit a crime,” the juror said. But the jury generally thought that Potter should have known she was holding a pistol and not a stun gun given her years of police experience. The juror said a turning point in deliberations came when jurors handled Potter’s taser and pistol and felt the differences.