Expert believes motorist was high when shot

"There is absolutely no reason to believe that Mr. Castile was some kind of threat", he said. "(Yanez was) stopping a motorist driving his family home from shopping.

Everything was going fine, Noble testified, until Castile "politely" told Yanez he had a firearm on him. Yanez was interacting with Castile on the driver's side at the time.

The St. Anthony police officer is charged with manslaughter in the death of Philando Castile. "It allows the officer to get in a safer position, just in case".

Dr. Andrew Baker, chief medical examiner for Hennepin County, who performed the autopsy, testified that Castile was hit by five of seven bullets fired by Yanez.

Yanez also faces two counts of risky discharge of a weapon for endangering the lives of two other passengers in Castile's auto at the time of the shooting.

Diamond Reynolds took the stand early and through tears identified Yanez as the killer of her boyfriend, Philando Castile. She told the jury Wednesday that one of the bullets from Yanez's gun came within inches of Diamond Reynolds, who was the passenger in the vehicle, and lodged in the center armrest. He said he told Castile not to reach for the gun and that Castile's "grip (was) a lot wider than a wallet". Castile had a permit to carry it, but he hadn't communicated that to Yanez before he was shot. "I told him not to reach for it", Yanez told the officer at the scene.

Diamond Reynolds (second to left), who saw a police officer fatally shoot her fiancé, Philando Castile, during a traffic stop last summer, will return to the witness stand on Tuesday, June 6, 2017. Yanez has pleaded not guilty.

Prosecutor Jeff Paulsen asked Mangseth whether his department teaches officers it's OK for an officer to fire if they can't see the gun. Only a handful of the cases he's consulted on have been criminal; the rest have been civil. She resumed the testimony she began Monday in a jury trial before Ramsey County Judge William Leary III. Those include the severity of the crime involved, whether the suspect in the case poses an imminent threat and whether the suspect is attempting to flee or evade arrest.

Yanez used car-to-car radio to alert his police partner, Joseph Kauser, that he meant to pull Castile over because he had a broken taillight and because Yanez thought he resembled the suspect in a recent armed robbery. Castile was not involved in the robbery, police have said.

Philando Castile, 32, was pulled over for a broken taillight.

"He didn't tell him to freeze" or put his hands up, Assistant Ramsey County Attorney Richard Dusterhoft said.

Prosecutor Rick Dusterhoft said Yanez can be heard on the video in the minutes after the shooting telling a fellow officer he didn't know where the gun was.

Noble testified that it's common for people to notify police officers they're carrying a firearm.

On Thursday, defense attorneys will take over and work to prove that 32-year-old Philando Castile was impaired, didn't follow orders and contributed to his own death. "Their safety is at risk".

The defense spent more than an hour calling Noble's credibility into question.

"I didn't feel threatened at that point from where I was standing".

The expert also raised as a concern the fact that Yanez never mentioned to his partner that Castile had a gun, either in the moment after learning about the gun, or after the shooting. Gray focused on her statement that Castile had been reaching for his seat belt.

Gray told the jury that Kauser has just testified that he was keeping an eye on Reynolds and Dae-Anna, but said later, "I don't know what he [Castile] was reaching for".

Kelly added that Yanez had clearly expressed in multiple statements that he saw Castile reaching for a gun when the officer made a decision to shoot.

  • Larry Hoffman