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Kim Potter: Guilty

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  • Joan Didion
    Joan Didion
    American novelist, journalist and scriptwriter (1934–2021)

An outcome was reached in the manslaughter trial of ex-police officer Kim Potter. The literary world is mourning acclaimed author Joan Didion. And another antiviral pill to treat COVID-19 has entered the chat.

It's Ashley, with the news you need to know. Let's dive in.

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Former police officer found guilty of manslaughter in Daunte Wright's death

Former Minnesota police officer Kim Potter has been found guilty of first- and second-degree manslaughter in the fatal shooting of Daunte Wright. Potter, 49, showed little emotion as the verdict was read in the Minneapolis courtroom. Potter fatally shot 20-year-old Wright while yelling "Taser" during an April traffic stop-turned-arrest in the Minneapolis suburb of Brooklyn Center. Wright's mother began sobbing as the first-degree conviction was read. Prosecutors said Potter, a veteran police officer, recklessly handled her firearm and caused Wright's death through her "culpable negligence" – a conscious and disregard of a substantial and unjustifiable risk. Defense attorneys said Potter mistook her firearm for a Taser but was justified in using deadly force to prevent another officer from being injured.

A lone demonstrator sits on a cement barrier with a Daunte Wright poster, Thursday, Dec. 2, 2021, outside the Hennepin County Government Center in Minneapolis as jury selection enters the third day for former suburban Minneapolis police officer Kim Potter.
A lone demonstrator sits on a cement barrier with a Daunte Wright poster, Thursday, Dec. 2, 2021, outside the Hennepin County Government Center in Minneapolis as jury selection enters the third day for former suburban Minneapolis police officer Kim Potter.

Author Joan Didion dies of Parkinson's disease

Acclaimed memoirist and novelist Joan Didion has died at age 87. "We are deeply saddened to report that Joan Didion died earlier this morning at her home in New York due to complications from Parkinson’s disease," said Paul Bogaards at Knopf Publishing. Didion wrote essays such as "Slouching Towards Bethlehem" and "The White Album." Mortality was a frequent topic of Didion's writing. "We are not idealized wild things," she wrote in "The Year of Magical Thinking." "We are imperfect mortal beings, aware of that mortality even as we push it away, failed by our very complication, so wired that when we mourn our losses we also mourn, for better or for worse, ourselves. As we were. As we are no longer. As we will one day not be at all."

Author Joan Didion poses for a portrait, Monday, Sept. 26, 2005, in her New York apartment. Didion, the revered author and essayist whose provocative social commentary and detached, methodical literary voice made her a uniquely clear-eyed critic of a uniquely turbulent time, has died. She was 87.
Author Joan Didion poses for a portrait, Monday, Sept. 26, 2005, in her New York apartment. Didion, the revered author and essayist whose provocative social commentary and detached, methodical literary voice made her a uniquely clear-eyed critic of a uniquely turbulent time, has died. She was 87.

What everyone's talking about

FDA authorizes a second antiviral to treat COVID-19

A day after authorizing the first antiviral pill to treat COVID-19, the Food and Drug Administration on Thursday authorized a second: Merck’s molnupiravir. The prescription medication, which can be taken at home, is designed to stop the progression of COVID-19 from mild to severe symptoms in people at high risk. In data presented to an FDA advisory panel in late November, the drug was shown to prevent 30% of infections from progressing – far fewer than Pfizer’s antiviral Paxlovid, which the FDA authorized on Wednesday.

Trump appeals to Supreme Court seeking to block release of Jan. 6 documents

Former President Donald Trump asked the Supreme Court on Thursday to block the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection from getting documents from the National Archives and Records Administration. Trump’s lawyers argued that confidential deliberations are fundamental to the operation of government and Congress limited its ability to access presidential records. But the lawyers argued the investigating committee ignored the restrictions with its sweeping request for documents.

Trump supporters climb the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
Trump supporters climb the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

Real quick

Happy holidays from the Sussex fam (we see you, Lilibet!)

Royals grow up so fast. Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan released a holiday card on Thursday with a welcome surprise: our first look at their 6-month-old daughter, Lilibet Diana. Photographer Alexi Lubomirski took the photo at the family's residence in Santa Barbara, California, last summer. "This year, 2021, we welcomed our daughter, Lilibet, to the world," the card reads. "Archie made us a ‘Mama’ and a ‘Papa’, and Lili made us a family." After stepping back from their roles as senior members and moving from Britain to Los Angeles, Harry and Meghan have mostly kept Archie, 2, and Lilibet out of the public eye. This was a welcome treat!

Prince Harry, Duchess Meghan offer first glimpse of Lilibet Diana.
Prince Harry, Duchess Meghan offer first glimpse of Lilibet Diana.

A break from the news, holiday edition

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Joan Didion, Meghan Markle, Kim Potter, Trump, COVID-19: Thursday’s news

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