The trial of former Brooklyn Center Police Officer Kim Potter, who is charged in the April killing of Daunte Wright, will not be live streamed, a judge ruled Thursday.
Judge Regina Chu ordered that Potter’s trial would not be “recorded, broadcast or live streamed in audio and video” in the ruling. The trial is set to start on Nov. 30.
Potter was charged with second-degree manslaughter after shooting and killing Wright during an April 11 traffic stop.
Potter’s team filed a motion opposing broadcasting the trial last month, according to WCCO.
Chu acknowledged the significance of former Minneapolis Police Department officer Derek Chauvin’s trial being broadcast live last spring. Chauvin was charged and convicted in the murder of George Floyd last summer.
Chauvin's trial took place while more restrictive social distancing measures were in place, which largely prevented media and spectators from being present in the courtroom due to COVID-19.
The high-profile nature of the trial also presented possible security concerns if spectators were allowed in the Hennepin County Government Center, Chu noted.
“As the COVID-19 pandemic winds down, the Court has relaxed its mandates on social distancing. Furthermore, the Court does not anticipate any closure of the Hennepin County Government Center during the trial in this case,” the ruling reads.
The trial will accommodate as many spectators as “reasonably possible,” including by making overflow rooms available.
The 12 media outlets who have so requested access to the trial will also be allowed in the courtroom or overflow rooms, according to the ruling.
It should be noted that despite the ruling's wording, the COVID-19 pandemic isn't currently winding down, with the more contagious delta variant causing cases to surge across the country, albeit there have been proportionally fewer deaths so far thanks to the vaccine.
This in turn is leading to many organizations, municipalities, and businesses reintroduce COVID mitigation efforts such as masking and distancing.