Criminal Justice

Officer in Minnesota is charged with manslaughter in death of cafeteria supervisor

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A police officer in Minnesota has been charged with second-degree manslaughter in the shooting death of a man he had pulled over for a broken taillight.

Ramsey County Attorney John Choi announced Wednesday that he made the decision to charge St. Anthony police officer Jeronimo Yanez rather than seek a grand jury indictment, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports. The Washington Post and the New York Times also have stories,

Yanez is charged in the July 6 death of Philando Castile, a cafeteria supervisor at St. Paul Public Schools. Castile’s girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, live-streamed a video immediately after the shooting in Falcon Heights.

Reynolds said on the video that Castile had warned the officer that he was carrying a pistol and he was licensed to carry it. According to Reynolds, the officer shot Castile as he was raising his arms into the air. On the video, the officer says, “I told him not to reach for it. I told him to get his hand out.”

Choi said Castile didn’t try to remove the gun from his pocket, and Yanez wasn’t justified in using deadly force based only on a “subjective fear of death or great bodily harm.”

In addition to the manslaughter charge, Yanez faces two felony counts of dangerous discharge of a firearm, according to the Star Tribune.

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