MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The judge overseeing the manslaughter trial of former Brooklyn Center police officer Kim Potter has ruled that news organizations will be allowed to live broadcast the proceedings.
In a Tuesday filing, Hennepin County Judge Regina Chu ordered that video and audio recording and live broadcasting will be allowed in the courtroom during the trial session. Any recordings made will be able to be broadcast, re-broadcast or viewed on demand.
The only proceedings not subject to audio recording will be sidebar discussions, although they will be allowed to be captured on video.
Chu noted in the filing that her decision was made prior to a protest over the weekend, where demonstrators gathered outside what they believed to be her Minneapolis home and called for her to allow live coverage.
This decision comes days after news organizations, including WCCO-TV, asked the judge to reconsider her earlier ruling that barred recording and live streaming during the trial. The organizations argued that live streaming was the only way to allow meaningful access in the case given the state of COVID-19 in Minnesota.
Potter, a former Brooklyn Center police officer, is facing first- and second-degree manslaughter charges in the April 11 shooting death of Daunte Wright. Her trial is slated to start on Nov. 30 with jury selection. Opening statements are scheduled for Dec 8.
WCCO will live stream the trial on CBSN Minnesota.
This will mark the second high-profile trial of a Minnesota police officer to be broadcast live this year. In April, the trial of Derek Chauvin was watched across the country. It was the first time in Minnesota history that gavel-to-gavel broadcasting was allowed.
Chauvin, a former Minneapolis police officer, was convicted of murder in the death of George Floyd. He is currently serving a 22-and-a-half year sentence.
While that trial was unfolding in the spring, Potter shot fatally Wright during a daytime traffic stop. According to her department’s former chief, she believed that she was holding her Taser when she shot the Black man with her firearm as he tried to drive away.