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Officer Who Shot Castile Demands Manslaughter Charges Get Dropped

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Amber Randall Civil Rights Reporter
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The officer responsible for Philando Castile’s death filed a motion, demanding the manslaughter charges against him get dismissed.

Office Jeronimo Yanez’s lawyers filed the motion Wednesday, claiming that Yanez is not responsible for Castile’s death, reports the Grand Forks Herald.

The motion argues that Castile is accountable for his own death because he had marijuana in his system at the time of the shooting. An autopsy done on Castile revealed that he had high levels of THC, a chemical found in marijuana, at the time of his death, the motion argued.

Because he was high, Castile did not listen to Yanez’s commands and just stared ahead during the traffic stop, the motion alleged. Therefore, Castile is culpably negligent, the motion declared.

“He should not even have been driving while under the influence. He should have showed his hands. He should not have reached for the handgun,”attorney Earl Gray wrote.

Yanez shot Castile during a traffic stop July 6 after pulling him over for a broken tail light. Diamond Reynolds, Castile’s girlfriend, live-streamed the aftermath of the shooting over Facebook. (RELATED: Officer Who Shot Philando Castile Faces Manslaughter Charges)

Yanez shot Castile after he informed the officer that he was licensed to carry and had a gun on him, according to Reynolds. Castile was reaching into his pocket to take out his identification when Yanez fired at him, Reynolds said.

Ramsey County Attorney John Choi announced Nov. 16 that he decided the “use of deadly force by Officer Yanez was not justified” in the Castile shooting.

Choi charged Yanez with a second degree manslaughter and two felony counts of dangerous discharge of a firearm.

Reynolds admitted to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension officials that she and Castile smoked marijuana before being stopped, the documents maintain.

“Her statement corroborates Officer Yanez’s observation that the smell of marijuana permeated the Castile automobile,” the documents claim.

Furthermore, the documents allege that Castile said he did not use “unlawful” substances on his paperwork to carry a firearm. It turns out that he received three marijuana-in-vehicle citations in 2005, 2006, 2008, the documents said.

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