Tuesday, April 7, 2015

White Police Officer Charged With Murder After Shooting Unarmed Black Man in the Back 8 Times as He Ran Away

A police officer from North Charleston, South Carolina was arrested and charged with murder Tuesday after video surfaced of him shooting 8 times at 50-year-old Walter Scott as he ran away. The officer, 33-year-old Michael Thomas Slager, 33, had said he feared for his life because the man took his stun gun in a scuffle after he stopped a Mercedes-Benz driven by Walter for a broken taillight on Saturday. Walter run away and the officer chases him into a grassy lot that abuts a muffler shop. He fired his Taser but it did not stop Walter, according to police reports. The video -- which was filmed by am unidentified bystander and you can watch, below -- picks up from there. According to the New York Times, the video begins in the vacant lot, apparently moments after Officer Slager fired his Taser. Wires, which carry the electrical current from the stun gun, appear to be extending from Walter's body as the two men tussle and Walter turns to run. Something — it is not clear whether it is the stun gun — is either tossed or knocked to the ground behind the two men and Officer Slager draws his gun, the video shows. When the officer fires, Walter appears to be 15 to 20 feet away and fleeing. He falls after the last of eight shots. Officer Slager then runs back toward where the initial scuffle occurred and and picks something off the ground. Moments later, he drops an object near Walter's body. Police reports say that officers performed CPR and delivered first aid to Walter. The video shows that for several minutes after the shooting, Walter's body remained face down with his hands cuffed behind his back. A second officer arrives, puts on blue medical gloves and attends to Walter, but is not shown performing CPR. As sirens wail in the background, a third officer arrives later, apparently with a medical kit, but also not seen performing CPR. An attorney representing the family says Walter was struck five times — three in the back, one in the upper buttocks and one in the ear. It is unclear if Walter died on the scene. If convicted, the officer could face up to 30 years to life in prison.

Here's the video of the shooting:

This is Officer Slager's mugshot.

source: NY Times
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