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Charges dropped against man accused of judge tampering

February 5, 2022 GMT

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A judge has dismissed charges against a Minneapolis man accused of trying to intimidate a judge presiding over the manslaughter trial of the former officer convicted in Daunte Wright’s death.

The Star Tribune reports that Cortez A. Rice was charged with tampering with a judicial officer, a felony. Rice was accused of entering a condominium building where he thought Judge Regina Chu lived and making comments meant to intimidate her into allowing broadcast coverage of the trial of former Brooklyn Center police Officer Kimberly Potter. Chu later approved live video coverage, but she made clear that the demands of protesters were not a factor.

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Judge William H. Leary III pointed out that the law requires the prosecution to prove the judge was placed in reasonable fear of substantial bodily harm to her or her family, or that the defendant could be expected to cause emotional distress.

“The State concedes that the complaint does not allege such harm,” Leary wrote.

Rice remains in custody because of a probation violation in connection with an illegal weapons conviction. Rice’s attorney argued last week for his client to be allowed a furlough to attend the funeral for his 15-year-old son, Jahmari Rice, who was shot outside his Richfield school Tuesday.