Protests as USA cop is acquitted of killing black motorist

Protests as USA cop is acquitted of killing black motorist

More than 2,000 people have marched through Minnesota to protest against the acquittal of a police officer who fatally shot Philando Castile, a black motorist, as he sat in his vehicle with his girlfriend and her four-year-old daughter. We hope they will be held and met with the same restraint that was shown on Friday in St. Paul.

Mr Castile had informed Officer Yanez just seconds before he was shot that he was carrying a gun. Castile had a permit.

A jury acquitted Yanez Friday, clearing him of a manslaughter charge as well as two lesser charges.

Juror Dennis Ploussard told the Associated Press that early in jury's deliberations, the panel of 12 was split 10-2 in favor of acquittal. Despite the acquittal, the city where Yanez works nearly immediately announced plans to dismiss him. City officials said they would offer him a "voluntary separation" because they had determined "the public will be best served" if he is no longer an officer in St. Anthony. Protesters walk along a street after a vigil outside the state Capitol in St. Paul, Minn., Friday, June 16, 2017. According to the Minnesota State Patrol, 18 people were eventually arrested. Crowds marched on I-94 in 2016 also, in the aftermath of Castile's killing. Demonstrators later in the night marched onto Interstate 94, shutting down traffic in protest. In the end, a few dozen people were left, and police managed to push them off the freeway.

U.S. police officer Jeronimo Yanez has been acquitted over the shooting of a black motorist. His girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, livestreamed the aftermath of the shooting on Facebook because, she said, she wanted to make sure the truth was known.

Mr Yanez, the son of a Mexican immigrant, testified during the trial in Ramsey County District Court that he feared for his life after Mr Castile began reaching for a firearm that the latter had disclosed he had in his possession.

That left a jury to decide whether they believed Yanez on the witness stand, and they opted Friday to acquit the officer. And, as in prior cases of Black men being shot and killed, the Justice Department could open an investigation into the case, as Castile's uncle has requested. They raised questions about discrepancies in Reynolds' statements to investigators, including where Castile carried his wallet and who purchased the marijuana that was in the auto. Castile's family cursed and stormed from the courtroom and citizens flocked by the hundreds to the state Capitol to vent their anger. His mother, Valerie Castile, said the police officer got away with "murder".


"Philando Castile was our lunchman", one child told CBS Minnesota. "I will never have faith in the system".

Outside the courthouse, Valerie Castile said her son followed the law.

"It is a sad state of affairs when this type of criminal conduct is condoned simply because Yanez is a policeman".

"He was trying to get out his ID and his wallet out of his pocket", Reynolds says.

Castile worked at J.J. Hill Montessori Magnet School in St Paul.

Meanwhile, St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman described Castile as a "son of Saint Paul".

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