LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Louisville Metro Police Department Chief Erika Shields said Wednesday she agrees with the decision to charge the Minnesota police officer who shot and killed a 20-year-old Daunte Wright during a traffic stop Sunday, claiming she mistook her gun for her taser.
Prosecutors charged Brooklyn Center Police Department Officer Kim Potter with second-degree manslaughter. She resigned from the department this week, as did the Brooklyn Center PD chief.
Shields did not mince words Wednesday when asked her opinions on the situation at a public forum in Louisville.
“I fully expected her to be charged,” Shields said. “There was no way around that.”
While Shields said that she was not sure if the specific manslaughter charge was something she agreed on, given that she is unfamiliar with the charge’s weight in Minnesota, she stood her ground that criminal charges were appropriate.
“I don’t know the particulars of what second-degree manslaughter is, so I don’t want to say it’s the correct charge,” she said, “but I will say she should absolutely be criminally charged. Whether it’s murder, second-degree manslaughter, I don’t know... Yes, it may not have been intentional, but if your actions, whether you’re a cop or you’re a doctor, result in the death of someone, you have an obligation to take ownership of it,” she said.
The LMPD chief joined the department in January after leaving the Atlanta Police Department in a cloud of controversy; after an officer-involved shooting and non-fatal tasing incident, Shields fired involved officers without talking to them or their attorneys about the situation.
Those officers got their jobs back because a board determined Shields violated their due process.