Officer acquitted in shooting death of Philando Castile


Dayton drew criticism previous year after suggesting that Castile might not have been shot if he was white.

The city released a statement after the verdict Friday saying the officer's time with the department is over.

"(Yanez) killed this man in front of a child", said Johnson, 20, of St. Paul.

After the verdict, the city of St. Anthony, where Yanez was employed, announced he would not return to active duty and would be offered a separation package to leave the force. At the time, he was driving a vehicle with his fiancée, Diamond Reynolds, and her four-year-old daughter.

Yanez tells Castile he has a brake light out and asks for his license and proof of insurance. He later testified that Castile went to reach for the weapon despite his instructions not to do so.

Officer is acquitted in shooting death of... They heard two weeks worth of testimony.

The jury of 12, including two black people, had to sort through the competing narratives.

"As hard as this is for some members of our community, we have to accept this verdict", he said.

"He didn't deserve to die the way he did", Castile's sister, Allysza, said. Prosecutors made Yanez out to be a trigger-happy police officer who was losing control during the traffic stop.

"The system in this country continues to fail black people and will continue to fail us", she said outside the courtroom. Shortly thereafter, Yanez opened fire.

Valerie Castile, mother of Philando Castile, in November when her son's killer was charged with manslaughter. She pointed out her son was wearing a seatbelt and had his girlfriend and her daughter in the vehicle.

"The system really is wrong and they really failed us", she said, in tears outside the courthouse. Jurors had deliberated for 27 hours over five days.

Earl Gray, a lawyer for Yanez, said his client had to react quickly to what he believed was an imminent threat.

Tom Kelly was among attorneys representing Officer Jeronimo Yanez. There were so many residents of St. Paul's black community there; the Castiles, a childhood friend told me, were "a big family" in St. Paul. We felt all along his conduct was justified. He says that "doesn't take away from the tragedy of the event". He was also cleared of two counts of intentional discharge of a firearm that endangers safety. In it, Mr Castile can be seen bleeding to death in the driver's seat.

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An audio recording captured Castile telling Yanez he had a gun in the auto, and the officer telling Castile not to reach for it. Seconds later, Yanez opened fire. Also, his defense attorneys made the argument that Castile was intoxicated with marijuana and mentioned that influenced his actions.

Following the verdict, Yanez was sacked by the police department.

The top headlines from The march, which appeared to be peaceful, was still taking place as of 9:30 p.m.

"I wasn't reaching for it", Castile murmured.

Yanez then fired seven shots.

This is breaking news, the Daily's report will be updated as news develops.

A court spokeswoman didn't immediately respond to a message seeking comment.

Jeff Paulsen from the prosecution team disputed the defense's claims, noting that Yanez never saw Castile's gun.

Judge William Leary told jurors Friday that he was denying the request. He said the reasons were unimportant, and he sent them back to work. "I have given Officer Yanez every benefit of the doubt on his use of deadly force, but I can not allow the death of a motorist who was lawfully carrying a firearm under these facts and circumstances to go unaccounted for". Castile had a permit for the firearm.

"If someone were just about to reach in their pocket and pull out a gun and shoot an officer, that's the last thing they would say", Paulsen said.

Castile's death came only a day after 37-year-old Alton Sterling was fatally shot by police in the southeastern city of Baton Rouge.

The jury began deliberations on Monday.

Reynolds testified that she started recording because she feared for her own life.