Minnesota officer acquitted in shooting of Philando Castile

St. Anthony police officer Jeronimo Yanez stands outside the Ramsey County Courthouse while waiting for a ride in St. Paul Minn. Closing arguments are set for Monday June 12 in a Minnesota police officer’s man

Philando Castile, 32, was shot several times by St. Anthony Police Officer Jeronimo Yanez, who is Latino, last July after Castile was pulled over with his girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, and Reynolds' 4-year-old daughter in Falcon Heights, Minnesota, a suburb of Saint Paul. At the time of the shooting, Reynolds and her 4-year-old daughter were also in the auto.

Mr Castile's shooting was among a string of killings of black people by police around the United States, and the livestreaming of its aftermath attracted even more attention.

"This system continues to fail black people and they will continue to fail you all", said Valerie Castille, mother of Philando Castille.

"You all murdered my friend and got away with it!" he shouted.

"I'm mad as hell right now, yes I am", shouted Castile.

All six Baltimore officers charged over the 2015 death of Freddie Gray due to spinal cord injuries suffered in the back of a police van were eventually cleared.

Castile was shot in the chest seven times during a traffic stop. "I told him not to reach for it". Castile appears to give something to Yanez through the drivers side window.

It was delivered in a Ramsey County District Court courtroom packed with family members and friends of both Yanez and Castile. Prosecutors insist Yanez never saw the gun and say he overreacted to a non-threat.

August 24: The St. Anthony Police Department says it put Yanez back on administrative leave after he had briefly returned to limited duty, citing "concerns and other feedback from the community".

SHAPIRO: Has Officer Yanez had any reaction to the verdict? After handing over his insurance card, Castile told him, "Sir, I do have to tell you, I do have a firearm on me".

Castile's mother, Valerie Castile, expressed anger and bewilderment during a televised news conference after the verdict.

Video footage recorded by Reynolds only seconds after the shooting showed Castile dying in the auto and Yanez standing outside the driver's side of the vehicle, continuing to yell while pointing his gun inside the auto.

Castile was licensed to carry the weapon. Castile, who was carrying a legal firearm and informed the officer of this, was shot after requesting permission to reach for his identification.

Thousands of chanting demonstrators are continuing a march toward the St. Paul Cathedral to protest a police officer's acquittal in the shooting of a black motorist.

The defense argued Castile was unable to heed the officer's instructions because he was allegedly under the influence of marijuana. He was pulled over by Officer Yanez on July 7th in a routine traffic stop.

Squad-car video played for the jury shows a wide view of the traffic stop and the shooting, with the camera pointed toward Castile's vehicle.

Yanez said in court that "he was forced to shoot Castile because the driver was not complying with the officer's commands and was reaching for a gun".

St. Paul Public Schools, where Castile was employed as a cafeteria worker, described Castile as a "beloved employee".

Yanez faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted on the second-degree manslaughter charge, though sentencing guidelines suggest around four years is more likely.

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