Thousands Protest Verdict Handed To Officer Who Shot Philando Castile
- Author: Leroy Wright Jun 21, 2017,
Jun 21, 2017, 3:54
Protestors marched from the state capitol in St. Paul and, as they did a year ago, about 500 marched down the ramps onto Interstate 94, blocking traffic on the busiest traffic connection between the Twin Cities.
Thousands of people gathered Friday evening at the state Capitol to protest the eventual verdict.
Yanez shot into Philando Castile's auto seven times after Castile told him he was carrying a gun. His death captured national attention when his girlfriend, who was in the vehicle with her young daughter, streamed the aftermath of the shooting live on Facebook.
Shortly after the verdict, the city of St. Anthony announced that Yanez would not be returning to work for its police department. But moments later Yanez fired seven shots while Castile was still buckled into his seat. "My family's faces popped up in my mind, my wife and baby girl", Yanez said, his voice choked with emotion.
State prosecutors Rick Dusterhoft and Clayton Robinson, and federal prosecutor Jeff Paulsen, played squad vehicle video of the shooting repeatedly as they presented their case. Dayton, a Democrat, drew criticism in the days after the shooting for suggesting that Castile might not have been shot if he was white.
On Friday, a jury chose to acquit the officer who shot Philando Castile on all charges in a decision that shocked many who followed the case.
Reynolds, in a statement issued through her attorney, said she was "incredibly disappointed in the verdict". Jeronimo Yanez, 29, was found not guilty of all three charges he faced in the death of 32-year-old Philando Castile: Second-degree manslaughter and two felony counts of intentional discharge of a unsafe weapon for endangering the safety of Castile's girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, and her four-year-old daughter. Indeed, police discrimination against people of color, often under cover of the war on drugs, has been well documented - Mr. Castile had been pulled over, usually for minor traffic infractions, 49 times in 13 years.
Like Castile's mother, Holmes has also watched a video of a Chicago police officer fatally shooting her own son, Ronald Johnson, 25, during a chase in October 2014 in the Washington Park neighborhood. Under the circumstances, just because he's a police officer, that makes it OK.
"When an officers learns a black person is carrying legally, "they are not necessarily going to relax, but they now have an idea about your character", Ector said". He believed Castile was reaching for a gun, while Reynolds asserts he was reaching for his wallet. The officer, during the trial, said that he feared for his life and that Castile was ignoring his commands not to pull out his gun. The last words he spoke before expiring were, "I wasn't reaching for it". Castile appears to give something to Yanez through the drivers side window.