The police officer responsible for shooting & killing Philando Castile was found NOT guilty on Friday.
On Friday, a judge found Jeronimo Yanez, the Minnesota police officer who fatally shot Philando Castile during a traffic stop last year, not guilty of second-degree manslaughter. He also was acquitted & found not guilty of two counts of intentional discharge of firearm that endangers safety, ultimately meaning he’s walking away scotch free now. The jury of 12, which included two black people, had to sort through the competing narratives lasting 5 days of deliberation.
Mr. Castile’s death became world wide news last Summer almost immediately after his girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, streamed the aftermath live on Facebook. From that moment, the case hinged largely on conflicting accounts of what Mr. Castile was doing before he was shot. Officer Yanez claimed that he believed Mr. Castile was grabbing a gun. Meanwhile, Ms. Reynolds testified in court, that Mr. Castile had been trying to cooperate and reach for only his driver’s license.
Following the verdict, Castile’s mother called her son's death a murder and tied the verdict to what she described as systemic racism in Minnesota.
“The system continues to fail black people, and it will continue to fail you all,” Valerie Castile said. “My son loved this city and this city killed my son. And the murderer gets away. Are you kidding me right now”
Check out the post-verdict interviews (below) and sound off in the comments.