SC officer sentenced; judge says shooting unarmed motorist was murder

Defense Expert Says Walter Scott Said F*** The Police!' Before He was Killed

After the sentencing, Judy Scott and Walter's two brothers told reporters that, while they had made peace with the case, they remained adamant the officer should pay for his crime.

In April 2015, Slager had pulled over Walter Scott because of a broken brake light on his Mercedes-Benz.

Had there been no video, prosecutors said, it is likely Slager would not have been prosecuted.

Slager faces life in prison and $250,000 in fines.

A federal judge handed down the sentence for Michael Slager on Thursday. A video recorded by a nearby civilian showed Slager firing shots into Scott's back as Scott, 50, ran from him after a traffic stop.

The defense is arguing that Scott grabbed Slager's stun gun and had an altercation with him on the ground, which can not be clearly seen in the bystander's video.

A defense attorney says a white former SC law officer should be sentenced on the low end of guidelines being considered by a federal judge. "I forgive you", she said. However, Savage said his client believed that Scott could have been armed based on the fact that he fled from the traffic stop which was initiated by a broken brake light on Scott's vehicle. Slager told Morgan that he didn't remember Walter Scott being on top of him, but believed he was tased by Scott.

The mother of a slain black motorist says she forgives the white former SC police officer who killed her son. "I pray for you, that you would repent and let Jesus come in your life".

Through tears, the mother spoke as part of a hearing during which a judge will decide how much time Slager spends in prison for the April 2015 killing following a traffic stop.

U.S. District Judge David Norton announced his finding about the gravity of the killing of Scott, an African-American who was running away from police officer Michael Slager when Slager fired at him eight times, shortly after 10 a.m. Thursday.

Slager pleaded guilty to the charge earlier this year.

A white former U.S. cop was sentenced to 20 years in prison Thursday over the fatal shooting of an unarmed black motorist - a case that sparked mass protests and anger over excessive use of force by police.

"Sentencing is the worst part of the best job in the world", Norton said before announcing his decision.

The federal crime for which Slager was sentenced is "deprivation of rights under color of law", which means basically that an officer has abused his authority and violated someone's rights. He added that Slager obstructed justice with inaccurate statements to law enforcement after the shooting.

This week, federal prosecutors and Slager's lawyers have called witnesses to testify about technical aspects of the case, including what happened to Slager's stun gun before the shooting. The officer has said he shot Scott in self-defense after fearing for his own life when the man grabbed the weapon and turned it toward him.

The video quickly ricocheted around the internet and on news stations, and Slager was arrested and fired from his police force.

Slager's state trial ended when a panel of 11 white jurors and one Black juror deadlocked previous year after deliberations over four days. He broke down the cell phone video frame by frame and explained that he could see that there was a fight between Scott and Slager, when they were on the ground.



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