Ex-South Carolina cop gets 20 years in prison for black motorist's death

CHARLESTON, S.C. (Reuters) – The white former policeman caught on video capturing an unarmed black man within the again after a 2015 visitors cease in South Carolina was sentenced on Thursday to twenty years in jail, with a federal decide ruling that the killing amounted to homicide.

FILE PHOTO: Former North Charleston police officer Michael Slager seems to be on throughout testimony in his homicide trial on the Charleston County courtroom in Charleston, South Carolina, U.S. November 29, 2016. REUTERS/Grace Beahm/Submit and Courier/Pool/File Photograph

The choice got here a yr after Michael Slager’s state homicide trial for the demise of fifty-yr-previous Walter Scott ended with a deadlocked jury. Slager, 36, is among the few cops in recent times in america to obtain jail time for an on-obligation capturing.

“Everybody acknowledges that this was a tragedy,” U.S. District Decide David Norton advised a Charleston courtroom full of members of each males’s households.

“What’s only for the Scott household is just not essentially only for the Slager household, and what’s only for the Slager household isn’t essentially only for the Scott household,” he stated. “It’s a zero-sum recreation.”

Slager was a patrolman in North Charleston when he pulled over Scott, a father of 4, for a damaged brake mild on April four, 2015. He stated he opened hearth as a result of he felt threatened after the motorist tried to take his stun gun throughout a wrestle.

But he pleaded responsible in Might to violating Scott’s civil rights through the use of extreme pressure, a cost that carried a potential lifetime jail sentence. Slager shot at Scott eight occasions, hitting him 5 occasions.

State prosecutors dropped the homicide cost in trade for the federal plea.

On Thursday, Slager expressed regret.

Walter Scott capturing witness Feidin Santana (C), who took the video of the capturing, arrives on the Charleston federal courtroom home on the 4th day of testimony through the sentencing listening to for former North Charleston police officer Michael Slager in Charleston, South Carolina, U.S., December 7, 2017. REUTERS/Randall Hill

“I want this by no means would have occurred,” stated Slager, jailed since his plea and wearing an inmate’s grey and white jumpsuit. “I want I might return and alter occasions, however I can’t and I’m very sorry for that.”

A bystander’s cellphone video of the capturing drew nationwide consideration to the case, renewing considerations about police remedy of minorities.

The footage was a centerpiece of the 4-day sentence listening to, with…

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