USA

Minnesota officer says motorist had hand on gun when shot

Minnesota officer says motorist had hand on gun when shot

Jeronimo Yanez took the stand in his own defense. Yanez shot Castile five times in the moments after the school cafeteria worker informed him he was carrying a handgun.

However, Dutton said that Castile had his hand on his gun, not his wallet, when Yanez fired. Castile was replying "I'm not pulling it out" as Yanez fired, the AP said.

He said as Castile drove by his squad vehicle, he locked eyes with him and remembered him having a "deer in the headlights" look.

The night of the shooting, Yanez radioed his police partner Joseph Kauser shortly before 9 a.m.to let him know that he had just spotted a driver who resembled one of the suspects in an armed robbery that Yanez had responded to four days earlier.

Yanez said when he approached Castile's vehicle he saw a child and an adult female. He testified that he examined autopsy reports to conclude that Castile had smoked marijuana within about two hours of his death. Defense attorneys argue he was stoned and it affected his responses to the officer's commands. Yanez is charged with manslaughter in the death of 32-year-old Philando Castile last July in a St. Paul suburb.

Yanez is charged with second-degree manslaughter and two felony counts of unsafe discharge of a firearm.

Reynolds testified that Castile was reaching for his ID in his back pocket when he was shot.

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When the traffic stop happened, Castile had told Yanez that he had a weapon, an audio recording of the encounter reveals, and Yanez told him not to reach for it. Seconds later, Yanez opened fire.

On July 6, 2016, Yanez and another officer stopped Castile for a broken taillight.

Castile was licensed to carry a handgun and told Yanez he had one when the officer approached his vehicle. He added it would be reasonable to assume Castile's plan was to fire the weapon.

He also questioned why he failed to give Castile clear commands, such as "don't move", or telling him to keep his hands on the steering wheel as officers are trained to do when they learn a driver has a firearm, especially if they become concerned about the person's movement. He said he was convinced that Castile reached for the gun because of Yanezs comments to investigators that he saw Castiles hand form a C-shaped grip of the sort that would be used to grab a thick-gripped pistol.

Ramsey County Attorney John Choi announced the charges against Yanez in November, saying that "no reasonable officer knowing, seeing and hearing what Officer Yanez did at the time would have used deadly force under these circumstances".

Defense attorneys then proceeded to play a squad cam video of Olson giving $40 to Reynolds after Reynolds told him that she and her daughter were hungry and did not have food. He also saw Castile in a seatbelt.

The footage shows Yanez screaming in the aftermath: "I told him not to reach for it!"

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Her video went viral, sparking protests both locally and nationally about police use of force, particularly against black men.

Kapelsohn was hired by the defense to review the case pending against Yanez and render his opinion.

"So are you saying (Castile) was trying to pull out the gun and shoot the officer", Paulsen finally asked. He was one of the last witnesses called by the defense Friday and news media from across the country packed the courtroom to listen to his account of the shooting.

But prosecutor Jeffrey Paulsen questioned Dutton's analysis by asking him to explain inconsistencies in Yanez's statements.

In the morning, jurors heard from Emanuel Kapelsohn, a law enforcement expert knowledgeable in use of force, police training and shooting scene reconstruction.

A Minnesota police chief is testifying in the manslaughter trial of his officer in the shooting death of a black motorist.

The St. Anthony police officer began to cry. Prosecutors have portrayed Castile as being cooperative when he volunteered to Yanez early during the stop, "Sir, I have to tell you, I do have a firearm on me".

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