Officer Who Shot Philando Castile Faces Manslaughter Charges

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Amber Randall Civil Rights Reporter
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The police officer who fatally shot Philando Castile will now face manslaughter charges, officials announced Wednesday morning.

Ramsey County Attorney John Choi declared that officer Jeronimo Yanez has been charged with second-degree manslaughter and two felony counts of dangerous discharge of a firearm, reports the Star Tribune.

Choi said he reached the conclusion that “use of deadly force by Officer Yanez was not justified.”

St. Anthony officer Yanez fatally shot Castile during a traffic stop July 6 after pulling him over for a broken tail light. Castile’s girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, live streamed the aftermath of the shooting onto Facebook. (RELATED: Police Chief Says Officer Who Shot Castile Had Sterling Reputation)

Reynolds maintained that Yanez shot Castile after he informed the officer that he had a gun on him, but was licensed to carry. She said that Yanez shot him when Castile reached into his pocket to hand over his identification.

“It is not enough … to express subjective fear of death or great bodily harm,” Choi said when explaining how Yanez’s actions did not meet a legal standard for warranted use of deadly force.

Choi and his officer began reviewing the incident Sept. 28 when Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension gave him their own findings.

Choi also did not turn to a grand jury to decide on charges, instead deciding on charges himself, Choi said during the press conference.

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