The jury's conviction of Minnesota police officer Kim Potter for the death of Daunte Wright, coupled with the judge's denial of bail pending her appeal, is a double injustice with dangerous implications for policing in America.
Officer Potter, a decorated policewoman with more than two decades of service, simply did not commit a crime. The prosecution conceded that she did not intend to shoot Wright and that she made a mistake by pulling out and firing a gun instead of a Taser.
Under American law, honest mistakes are not crimes - even if they result in tragic deaths. For example, an elderly driver accidentally putting a foot on the gas instead of the brake and killing a child is not necessarily a crime. It becomes a crime only if the action was reckless, involving a conscious decision to engage in conduct which the defendant knows poses a high risk of serious injury or death.
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Alan Dershowitz, professor emeritus for Harvard Law School, is the author of numerous books, including "The Case Against the New Censorship," and "The Case for Vaccine Mandates."