Jury Selection Wraps Up in Potter Trial, Opening Statements Start Dec. 8
A full jury has now been seated in the trial of Kim Potter, the former Brooklyn Center officer charged with first- and second-degree manslaughter in the death of Daunte Wright during a traffic stop last April.
Hennepin County District Judge Regina Chu says opening statements will take place Dec. 8. A total of 14 jurors have been seated, which includes two alternates selected Friday. Of the jury pool, 11 are white, two Asian and one Black. The gender is split evenly, with seven men and seven women.
Here’s a look at the 12 jurors and two alternates selected:
- Alternate Juror #57 – Woman, white, 70s. Husband served in military, was not in combat. She has served on two juries “a while ago,” confirms more than five years ago and one trial involved police interaction with a Hmong family.
- Alternate Juror #58 – Man, white, 30s. Juror strongly disagreed that it’s not right to second-guess law enforcement officers because they have such dangerous jobs. “We’re all just people, and just because you’re in law enforcement, you shouldn’t get extra leeway on your side. We should all be held accountable for our decisions,” he tells Judge Chu.
- Juror #40 – Man, white, 40s. Works in IT information security. Originally went to school to be cop. What changed mind about being cop? In college: “I was afraid about having to use my gun,” he said.
- Juror #48 – Woman, white, 40s. Worked/s in patent law, former IT project manager, grew up on farm in another state.
- Juror #55 – Man, white, 50s. Wife & daughter were crime victims last year, wife pistol-whipped during an attempted carjacking in south Minneapolis near the VA. He was not there. Navy veteran. Honored for volunteerism in Minneapolis parks & rec programming.
- Juror #21 – Man, white, 40s. Juror noted that he doesn’t “condone” people fleeing police. Juror says he can put that view aside to weigh case fairly and openly.
- Juror #22 – Man, white, 60s. Juror on questionnaire said that he had a “neutral” impression of Potter and Wright because he didn’t know much about the case. He also wrote that Potter “possibly made an error” based on video clip he saw on the news when incident first happened.
- Juror #17 – Woman, white, 20s. Felt protests after negatively affected the community, did not agree with the “defund” the police movement. “You are always going to need police officers,” she said. Said she could decide the case “on just the evidence” and leave outside views behind.
- Juror #19 – Woman, Black, 30s. Teacher, owns a Taser, victim of robbery 20 years ago. Lives in/near Brooklyn Center and near shopping mall that was looted. Strongly disagreed with statement that police shouldn’t face scrutiny because of their dangerous jobs. But she said it wouldn’t affect how she would weigh the Potter case.
- Juror #26 – Woman, Asian, 20s. Brother in the Marines. Said she had “some concerns” about how the verdict might play with her opinionated relatives, but said she believed she could put that aside.
- Juror #7 – Man, white, 20s, bass player in rock band, operational manager at Target.
- Juror #6 – Woman, white, 60s, background as a teacher. Expressed negative views of both Kim Potter and Daunte Wright on her questionnaire. She is anti-gun. Is concerned about seeing graphic images. “When I first heard about this, my reaction was ‘how can this happen?’” she said. “And that’s still where I’m at. And this trial maybe could clarify.”
- Juror #2 – Man, white, 50s. Expressed that Blue Lives Matter is counter to Black Lives Matter and didn’t think it was fair representation of police. Believes “defund” the police sends a negative message. Doesn’t believe in getting rid of police, but did say changes needed to be made.
- Juror #11 – Woman, Asian, 40s. Has a brother who was a Marine. She had a female friend who was fatally stabbed five years ago in Minneapolis.